How Curley's Wife Is Portrayed in "Of Mice and Men"

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The introduction of Curley’s wife into the novel is by other characters interpretations of her; she is talked about quite a bit and is called a ‘tramp’ and a ‘tart’ as well as many other things. Hearing Curley’s wife described in this manner gave both George and Lennie preconceptions about her, so when the reader meets her for the first time they have already heard about the reputation that she holds on the ranch. The way that her first appearance is described, it seems as if she is living up to her reputation; she was wearing red nail polish, red shoes and is described as having ‘rouged lips’ and being ‘heavily made up’. The use of red gives out connotations such as love, passion, anger, hate and danger. Curley’s wife is the only woman on the ranch and has no-one who will talk to her – including her husband. Her sexuality isolates her from the other characters. She is bored and lonely, but her attempts to engage the attention of the men on the ranch only serve to push them further away from her. She has already given up on her dream of a better life as a movie star and appears to hang her hopes on any man who will listen, as Lennie appears to. For one, Curley's wife is the only woman on the ranch and the only prominent female character in the entire novel. Also, Curley is very possessive of her, as if she is something that belongs to him but that everyone else desires. Curley wants the inferior men on the ranch to know that he has something valuable that they are prohibited from. Curley prohibits her from socializing with the other men, and thus she has no companions. Because she is so lonely she is always seeking attention and putting great effort into her looks. Her over-the top appearance portrays her desperation to be noticed. She is unable to make any connections with the men on the ranch, the only people she ever comes in contact with, because they see her as

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