I What do the first four paragraphs tell us about the character of Crooks?
In the first four paragraphs of chapter four, we already know how lonely and broken, physically and mentally Crooks is. Yet, he is clever and proud.
Crooks is a very lonely man, which we can see from the fact that his bunk is separated from the other workers', as shown in "Crooks, the negro stable buck, had his bunk in the harness room." He is isolated from the other workers because he is a black, and the only black, therefore is not considered important enough to have a living space separated from the working space, and this isolation takes away his chances of communicating to the other workers, which results in his loneliness. In the fourth paragraph, we know that it is Saturday night and sound of moving horses and feet stirring can be heard. We can understand from these that all other ranch workers had left for town, but Crooks is segregated and could not go with them. He can only stay in his bunk, which tells us that he is not accepted in the society. The imagery "a small electric globe threw a meager yellow light" also highlighted his loneliness, for the contrary between the dim, still light inside the barn and the lively noises in the dark outside created a sense of abandonment. The use of word "small" and "meager" also suggests that he is insignificant to the other workers. His loneliness can also be understood through his broken nature. He had a broken back, and there are a lot of "broken" objects in his room, like "broken harness", "split collar" and "broken hame". They all symbolize Crooks. He is a broken piece of the society that no one cares for, especially in a society which values people by their abilities to provide services.
Yet, he is very intelligent. Not only can he read, but he knows a lot of words. This can be shown in owning "a tattered dictionary". The dictionary has obviously been used for many times, and so he must be more educated and clever than most of...
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