John Steinbeck The Pearl Analysis

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Rumi, a Tajik poet once said, “Greed makes man blind and foolish, and makes him an easy prey for death.” In John Steinbeck’s The Pearl, Kino proves that with wealth comes undeniable evil. Despite Kino’s want for more and the best for his family, the malevolent events that come with the pearl eventually led to the death of his beloved son, Coyotito. Throughout the novel the pearl showed signs of hope for the family, but those signs of hope eventually led to feelings of greed. The ideas that the pearl encompasses throughout John Steinbeck’s The Pearl, are acquisitiveness, optimism, and nefariousness.

In John Steinbeck’s The Pearl, the pearl symbolizes acquisitiveness through causing its owner to want more and show skepticism and suspicion toward others. One example of this is when Kino is socializing with his neighbors and is asked what he will
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Kino begins with wanting to marry Juana; an idea that was once impossible due to their economic state, but with the money they are about to obtain it is now a possibility. “In the pearl he saw Juana and Coyotito and himself standing and kneeling at the high altar, and they were being married,” Kino imagined while observing the pearl. (Steinbeck 24). From there he was not yet satisfied, for he dreams up more of the items he will be able to obtain now that he is considered a “rich man.” Kino saw himself in, “new white clothes, and he carried a new hat” (Steinbeck 24). He also saw himself with a rifle and Coyotito with an education. Kino imagines himself with all of these things, not thinking of his neighbors or others that are less fortunate than himself. His thoughts of obtaining goods for himself reveal the greed that is beginning to overshadow his closeness to his neighbors and his want for them all to prosper. Another example of the pearl symbolizing acquisitiveness is through its owner showing skepticism and suspicion toward others. Following the
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