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Crooks (named for his crooked back) is the stable buck who works with the ranch horses. He lives in the harness room by himself because of the segregation law set by Jim Crow; he is also the only black man on the ranch. Crooks likes to read books this shows he is cleverer than the other men on the ranch and likes to keep his room neat, but he has been so beaten down by loneliness and prejudicial treatment of that he is also starting to treat people with hatred.
His Physical disability is one of the many ways that he suffers on the ranch. John Steinbeck tries to make the novel realistic by showing how black people were treated and isolated in 1930s America.
Crooks may not be the main character in the novel, he is important because he fitted in the society at the time of the novel in 1930s America. Steinbeck uses Crooks to show how life was for black people in 1930s America. The Character is firstly introduced when candy was showing George and Lennie around and when he was talking about how angry the boss was when George and Lennie were late to work. Candy tells them that the boss takes his anger on crooks,” Ya see the stable bucks a nigger”, “the boss gives him hell when he is mad”. White People in 1930s America had no discomfort in using derogatory language, this was normal for people it was the local language in 1930s. Candy says “nice fella too” and “he reads a lot” Proving he is intelligent and nice guy.
People show hatred towards him because of the colour of his skin. He and many coloured people were separated from the whites in 1930, because of the Jim Crow laws. George asks Candy ‘‘what kind of man is the boss’’ he quickly brings up that the boss had brought whisky for them at Christmas, he also explains what happened when they let crooks in, Crooks got into a fight one Christmas with a white man. Steinbeck presents the character of Crooks in a detailed description; John Steinbeck tells us that Crooks’ room is in the harness where all the horses sleep, this shows that he is segregated from all the other men on the ranch.
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