Curley’s Wife Curley’s wife is an extremely complex character in the novel “Of Mice and Men.” Steinbeck excellently portrays this throughout the novel with the detailed ways in which he describes her looks and everyday behaviour. Before we even meet Curley’s wife we know that George thinks she will be trouble. This prepares the reader for future events and we begin to dislike her immediately. Curley’s wife is treated with so little self respect, hence why she is never referred to by her first name; this highlights the prejudice against women in the novel and shows she has no importance amongst the ranch workers. She is also a good-looking lady who wears a lot of makeup, form-fitting dresses, and ostrich feathered-high heels.
Another link is how she was “heavily made up”, and she had “full, rouged lips”. They was she acts around the other men on the ranch was disgusting for a married woman. She was constantly flirting with them, for example she said to Lennie “Nobody can’t blame a person for lookin’” implying that it’s okay for Lennie to look if he wants. She was also always running away from Curley at the same time. Curley’s wife would always try to show more of herself, and of course the reaction of the men was to call her a “tramp” and a “rat trap”.
Curley’s wife, who walks the ranch as a temptress, seems to be a prime example of this destructive tendency—Curley’s already bad temper has only worsened since their wedding. Aside from wearisome wives, Of Mice and Men offers limited, rather misogynistic, descriptions of women who are either dead maternal figures or prostitutes. Despite Steinbeck’s rendering, Curley’s wife emerges as a relatively complex and interesting character. Although her purpose is rather simple in the book’s opening pages—she is the “tramp,” “tart,” and “bitch” that threatens to destroy male happiness and longevity—her appearances later in the novella become more complex. When she confronts Lennie, Candy, and Crooks in the stable, she admits to feeling a kind of shameless dissatisfaction with her life.
She had bigger dreams than just being a housewife and I think being the only woman on the farm stifles her. She looks to the men on the farm for friendship and companionship, but obviously they take it as flirting and in order to stay out of trouble with Curley, they stay away from her. This increases Curley’s wife’s loneliness. Curley’s wife represents women in the 1930’s during the Great Depression. Women in the 1930’s were seen by men as scheming and devious.
For example George states she is a ‘tramp’. Her relations with Curley are troubled and extremely scarce as they are never once seen with one another. Steinbeck portrays many acts of Curley’s wife that significantly affect the reader’s relationship with her. Two prime examples would be when she enters Crook’s barn and shows a shear amount of prejudice to Crooks, Lennie and Candy. Secondly, towards the end of the novella, the readers see her as an innocent woman due to the way she ‘consoles’ Lennie.
Another character is Curley's wife who is very lonely. Steinbeck shows lonliness by showing her only women on the ranch. She is lonely because at that time author is writing ,women were used to stay at home and not allowed to go out. She always flirts with the male workers of the ranch to seek attention.She always try to talk to somebody but no one is ready to talk to her. For evidence she said to Lennie,"I never get to talk to nobody.
In the John Steinbeck’s novel “of Mice and Men” he introduces us to the character of Curley’s wife. She could be interpreted as a mis-fitting character in the novel as no one relates to her. Steinbeck relates her to how women were powerless during 1930’s and makes her seem desperately lonely and isolated from the others on the ranch. She has sexual power which she uses to get to the men on the ranch and she just needs someone to talk to. She dislikes her husband and had a desire to become a movie star.
She has no friends therefore has a lonely existence. Our first impression of Curley’s wife is by the men on the ranch and what they think about her. Some of the words the men use to describe her include ‘‘tart’’ ‘‘jail-bait’’ and ‘‘she got the eye.’’ These all describe her to be dangerous before we first see her. When we’re first introduced to Curley’s wife she is heavily made up with red lipstick and red ostrich feathers both of which symbolise sexuality as well as danger. She has a very flirtatious nature which makes her husband jealous.
In the 1930s America, women were seen as inferior to women. They were deprived of many rights and their default position was thought to be at home. Married women were by law forbidden to work and those unmarried were reduced to the worst jobs of society. In Of Mice and Men which is essentially a poignant tale about the friendship between two men, Steinbeck presents to us an unvaried sample of women. One of which actually speaks and appears for herself in person and another who although appears to have some moral values is “dead” and only appears through Lennie as a figment of his imagination.