of mice and menchapter 5: A motif is a recurring image, theme, or idea. The motif of hands runs through the novel. List three references to hands. What is the signifiance of this repeated idea?

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kamiegoldstein's profile pic

kamiegoldstein | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

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Another hand reference is of Curley's wife- remember she has red finger nails. This is significant due to her less than pristine morals and her desire for glamour and romance. Her hands also are alluring and add to her sensuality.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In Chapter One of Of Mice and Men, Lennie's hands are described in anthromorphic terms, as paws. For Lennie is essentially animal-like, simple in his reasoning abilities.  His reaction to Curley's wife is purely carnal with no thought about the dangers of the temptress.

The old swamper, Candy, is missing a hand as a result of a farm accident.  Because of his disability and his age, Candy is relegated to the bunkhouse where he performs housekeeping duties.  Candy has worn out his usefulness, just as his old dog has, and he worries that he will be fired

Curley's one hand in kept in a glove, presumably so it will be soft for his wife.  Thus, he probably does not use it as much as he does the bare hand; perhaps, he wishes to suggest that he is mighty enough to fight and work with one of his powerful fists. 

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r-m123 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 2) Honors

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chapter 5: A motif is a recurring image, theme, or idea. The motif of hands runs through the novel. List three references to hands. What is the signifiance of this repeated idea?

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