In Of Mice and Men, why does Curly's wife like Lennie so much? Is it just because he beat up her husband?

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brendawm eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Of Mice and Men, Curly's wife likes Lennie so much not only because he "beat up her husband", but also because he represents to her an opportunity to "spread her wings" so to speak.  In spite of all her short comings, she is, above all else, a very lonely woman, one of the few females in the predominantly male setting.  All of the other ranch hands know that Curly's wife is bad news and off limits, but Lennie is not as quick witted as the rest and is not able to  make this same conclusion.  To him, even though he has been told by George to stay away from Curly's wife, Lennie, too, is in need of a friendly face and a kind word.  For a bit it seems to be a mutual attraction to friendship; however, it sadly comes to a tragic end.

piperonstage | Student

Curley's wife likes Lennie so much because he is sweet and will talk to her without judging her. Also, she likes that he doesn't treat her like a pretty girl, he treats her like a friend

iheartcheese | Student

I think that curleys wife seems to like lennie because he is just like her. He is lonley and different to everyone else, just like her. Although lennie can talk to the other males in the ranch, she can't due to the fact she is a female. So the fact that lennie is talking to her makes her feel she has a friend. I don't think its due to him 'beating up her husband' because for oner, she dosen't know it was him in the first place because no one told her.

girlwholuvs2talk | Student

NO. I don't recall a point in the book where Curly or anyone tells his wife that Lennie beat him up. I believe that the female character in this book is portrayed as a character who likes to manipulate. And since Lennie is mentally challanged that makes him an easy target to manipulate. And not just that but Curly's wife puts Lennie in the position to create conflict.

fallinx3inluv3 | Student

It is not fully because he beat up on her husband she did although think her husband needed that beating.  But she likes Lennie so much because she feels like no one talks to her and that he doesn't know any better then to talk to her.  She also thinks he is funny and powerful.

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Of Mice and Men

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