Describe how Curley's wife is a victim of prejudice.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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It is not immediately evident to see that Curley's wife is the victim to prejudice.  She is not even close to the social malignment of Crooks, Candy, or even Lennie.  She is in a position of economic power, for what it is worth, on the ranch in her marriage to Candy.  She is also feared, treated with a combination of fear and respect.  It might be here where her being a victim to prejudice is evident.  She is seen as a "vamp," a woman who is "no good."  George constantly tells Lennie to stay away from her, almost condemning her as one who uses sex to get what she wants and entraps others.  She is seen, to a great extent, as a "gold digger," one who married Curley for his money and one who cheats on him.  At the same time, she is the victim to prejudice because she is not really known by anyone on the farm.  It is easier for the men to capitulate to stereotypes about her, as opposed to getting to know her.  This makes her a victim to prejudice.  I think that Lennie might be the only one who actually makes an attempt to get to know her, breaking through prejudice.  Interestingly enough, this moment is where she dies.


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