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Remember that Crooks is a black man. Remember that in those days there was a real taboo against black men getting involved with white women. This was a big deal.
So, what Curley's wife threatened to do was to say that Crooks had come on to her. If she had claimed that, he would have been in a whole lot of trouble -- he would surely have lost his job and maybe even gotten physically hurt.
As for why she did it, it is because she is a nasty person. She is very unhappy and she seems to want to make others unhappy too.
Curley's wife is threatens Crooks because she has been left behind at the ranch while the men go out to the town and the brothel's, she feels very lonely and we must remember that she explains that she wants to be a movie star so while she is stuck in this place with curley she cannot do this, we learn that over the years she has grown to resent Curley and she only married him because her mother would not let her go to Hollywood with a man that thought she would be able to make it as a star.
So Curley's wife threatens Crooks because she see that he is in a weaker position than she is, in this time the blacks were said to be the inferior race also crooks himself had a disibility as he had a crooked back, these two characteristics were very important when Curley's wife decided to threaten Crooks as these were two of the worst things you could be at this time.
Crooks is threatened because there is no-one else that Curleys wife can take her anger out on except for Lennie but she has taken a liking to Lennie after seeing what he has done to her husbands hand (Curley) so she decides to take all her anger out on Crooks even though he has done nothing wrong she threatens him with rape saying that if he speaks out at her she will threaten to say that he has raped her, at this time it was unseen for a black man and a white woman to be together so this would be a very strong accusation and if she said this Crooks would surely lose his job and worse.
i have a question about your answer... so can you plz give me page references for his father's warning about playing with white children. (white women and children....)
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