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In Of Mice and Men, what is 'Old Susy's Place' and what purpose does it serve in the...

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adamp0809 | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 7, 2009 at 2:46 AM via web

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In Of Mice and Men, what is 'Old Susy's Place' and what purpose does it serve in the novel?

 

Also, how does Candy react to the gunshot and Carlson cleaning his gun?

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ms-mcgregor | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 7, 2009 at 3:07 AM (Answer #1)

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Susy's Place is one of the reasons most of the men do not have a lot of money saved. It is a house of prostitution where the men go every payday to drink and carouse. They usually end of spending most of their money there instead of saving it. George has gone into the town with the rest of the men and probably spent most of his money when Lennie talks to Crooks about their dream of a farm. Since Candy hasn't gone to Susy's either, and hasn't wasted his money on other things, he still has the $500 he received when his hand was cut off. This makes the dream of George and Lennie's farm seem closer to reality. That's why George says he and Lennie will start saving their money, too ( No more trips to Susy's).

After Carlson shoots Candy's dog, Candy reacts by saying he should have killed the dog himself, not let a stranger do it. This foreshadows an event later in the novel.

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mlsldy3 | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted November 20, 2014 at 2:35 PM (Answer #2)

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"We go in to old Susy's place. Hell of a nice place. Old Susy's a laugh- always crackin' jokes. Like she says when we come up on the front porch las Sat'day night. Susy opens the door and then she yells over her shoulder 'Get your coats on girls, here comes the sheriff.' She never talks dirty, neither. Got five girls there."

This quote tells us right away that Susy's place is a brothel. There are not many women on the ranch, so when the men want the company of women, they head over to Susy's place. What is interesting, is that most of the men complain about not having any money. They all want a better life, but once they get paid, they go and spend all their money at Susy's place. Life on the ranch is a lonely life. All the men spend all their time together. They know that they can go to Susy's and have a few drinks and have a good time. Susy's place is a place that the men can feel a sense of friendship and togetherness. 

When Candy hears the gunshot, he turns his head to the side, so no one can see how upset he is. He has had the dog for a long time. It was his constant companion. He knows that it was the right thing to do, but he is obviously really upset. It is one of his greatest fears. He believes that once someone has passed their usefulness to others, they will just discard them. When he sees Carlson cleaning the gun, he says that he should have been the one to kill the dog. He feels like since the dog was his, he was the one responsible for putting it out of his misery.

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