When a book is considered a tragedy it is because the main character, the hero of our story, a good person goes through a downfall causing the audience to be in suspense and feel sorrow for the character.
In the story, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck we have the main character Lennie is seen to be the most tragic character in this story because he just wants to pet soft things but never thought that this would lead him to his death. Curley’s wife the only women on the ranch goes through a tragedy herself as well, her tragedy is that she receives racial discrimination and her husband possessiveness, he doesn’t allow her to conversate with any of the other men. Another character, Crooks also receives discrimination because he is the only black man on the ranch. He is also a very lonely person and is always kept to himself and has no friends. Lennie Small is an innocent man who would never do anything to harm anyone intentionally. He is “loyal” to his companion George and can be skeptical at times but he means well. He is also very happy to live out the American dream with George and be able to pet all the soft things that he wants. So, right from the beginning you can see that Lennie is a great guy and that’s until the tragedies come falling into play.
Lennie has this obsessive urge to pet soft things but he is very strong and can get carried away. His urge to pet turns into aggression and he unintentionally causes harm to those around him or to what he is petting. He was petting Curley’s wife’s hair and got carried away and got a little violent causing him to snap her neck leading to her death. After this everybody else on the ranch wanted to get back at Lennie to teach him a lesson so his best friend George, companions of so many years, had to kill his longtime friend. This is very tragic because Lennie really did not mean no harm. He cannot help himself, he has issues and did not deserve to die.
Our second tragedy will start with Curley’s wife. She is known to be the only women on the ranch. She receives a lot of gender and racial slurs from the other men on the ranch as, “jailbait” and “tart”, they say these things to her because they believe she dresses like a whore because she wears a lot of red and ostrich feathers and wears a lot of makeup. Her husband forbids her from speaking to the other men so, she always hangs around the bunk house and asks for Curley as an excuse to talk to the others. On top of her husband not allowing her to speak to anyone he does not spend time with her himself and is usually not even in her presence. She really feels alone and she feels as if she lost all her dreams. Before, she desired to be famous and wanted to make it big and declined a man who wanted to help her fulfill that dream. Instead she marries Curley, to get back at her mother, a man she does not even like to talk to or be around because he is so belligerent. She is sadly killed by Lennie who broke her neck accidentally while petting her hair and she talking to him.
Curley’s Wife’s story is very pitiful because her life never worked out how she wanted it to. She never got her dream job, did not marry the guy she wanted to, could not conversate with others and when she did the man broke her neck and she died. Crooks, the saddest and loneliest person in our story. He is a major victim of racial discrimination and was rather lonely but by choice. He preferred to keep his distance and advised everyone else to keep their distance as well. He had no friends on the ranch and was always alone until one day he decided he wanted to join George, Candy, and Lennie in pursuing the american dream but, that quickly got shot down when George was being racist to him. Crooks is never invited to any of the meetings or card games. Even when he does receive kindness he still takes it as hate after so many years of being treated like a waste. He receives the most hate from Curley’s wife all the time. Mom stop discrimination. All crooks ever wanted was to be treated equally just like he was when he was younger. Then, he finally stands up to Curley’s wife for teasing Lennie because of his rabbits she quickly shoots him down by saying that she can and will get him lynched.
This tragedy is very unfair and nobody deserves to be treated the way Crook was treated and when he had the guts to stand up for himself he got threatened with his life. In conclusion, the story Of Mice and Men is a very tragic story because the people in the story did not deserve anything that happened to them. It is also very tragic because of the way the people died in the story.
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