Further, she does little to hide these flirtations from her husband, though they’re likely to infuriate him and make him feel even smaller. As the only woman on the ranch, Curley’s wife is lonely and sad; something her marriage to Curley only makes worse. She reveals throughout the course of the story that she is unhappy in her marriage because her husband seems to care little for her, and is really more interested in talking about himself than anything else. She is constantly searching for her husband, “I’m looking for Curley.” Although, this may be just an excuse to mingle with the men and have some company. Curley’s wife barges in on Lennie, Crooks, and Candy in Chapter Four.
Like the ranch-hands, she is desperately lonely and has broken dreams of a better life. Curley’s wife: Of Mice and Menis not kind in its portrayal of women. In fact, women are treated with contempt throughout the course of the book. Steinbeck generally depicts women as troublemakers who bring ruin on men and drive them mad. 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.
The title "Of Mice and Men". Firstly Steinbeck portrays Curley's wife as a lonely character. Newly married and in a strange place, she is forbidden by Curley to talk to anyone but him. To counter this, she constantly approaches the ranch hands on the excuse of looking for Curley. The only result is that the men regard her as a "slut", and Curley becomes even more intensely jealous.
Steinbeck uses Curley's wife's character to depict the inferiority of women. He also uses her to inform the reader of the dire range of choices for women of that era. Steinbeck creates the character of Curley's wife to show the reader that life as a house wife is dull and repetitive. He does that by making Curley's wife not fit into the expected mould of a married house wife. She is a lonely character constantly searching for attention, even if it is from ranch workers, cripples and the coloured.
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.
“Ain’t I got a right to talk to nobody?” Curley’s wife is a method and a character that Steinbeck uses to sum up the life of an average 1930s, American woman, who suffers from sexism and loneliness. Curley’s wife feels that because she is a woman, she isn’t allowed to go near the workers on the ranch and she often complains, as shown in the quote, that she feels that she should be allowed to talk to the workers. This prejudice makes Curley’s wife isolated from everyone else on the ranch, and because she is the only female on the ranch, she doesn’t have anyone else that she can talk to and relate to. Steinbeck uses the complaints by Curley’s Wife to show that she is being affected by loneliness and isolation. Another character that Steinbeck
Curley made life really unpleasent for his wife on the ranch. He never had a proper conversation with her throughout the book and never cared how she felt. Curley kept “his hand soft for his wife” and went around showing off to other men about it. Curley is always resentful and angry towards everyone on the ranch, he has a problem with big men even though he is described as small in the book. Everyone on the ranch called Curleys Wife a ''tart'' because she flirts and the ranch men said ''Shes got the eyes''.