The Pearl Essay Examples

Essays on The Pearl

Steinbeck begins The Pearl by saying that it is a story that is retold and he introduces Kino and his family.

The pearl has changed Kino’s personality
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The story centres on Kino, a pearl diver, his wife Juana and their son Coyotito. Although the family live in poverty they also live peacefully. Whilst out gathering pearls one day Kino finds a huge pearl. Kino tries to sell the pearl but the pearl buyers try to cheat him. Kino is attacked and has to flee. They are being followed by trackers who want to steal the pearl. Kino kills the trackers but in the fight Coyotito is killed.…...
ChangePersonalityThe Pearl
The Pearl
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The book – The Pearl, paints numerous lessons to several disciplines, but more in business because the whole story revolves the selling of the pearl and the way the different stakeholders acted through. Kino the main character, together with his wife sets out to find a pearl to get money to treat their son Coyotito who has been bitten by a scorpion. They find a big precious pearl that changes the whole goal, from treating the child to educating him,…...
The Pearl
Drawing inferences from The Pearl
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1. Juana does not consult Kino about getting the doctor when the baby is stung. Yet Juana is a dutiful, submissive woman to Kino in all things: why not in this situation? “The doctor would not come, Kino said to Juana. She looked up at him, her eyes as cold as the eyes of a lioness. This was Juana’s first baby—this was nearly everything there was in Juana’s world. And Kino saw her determination and the music of the family…...
DrawingThe Pearl
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Native Americans in “The Pearl” by John Steinbeck
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Steinbeck's The Pearl is one of his most intriguing pieces. Steinbeck manages to fit many different ideas into a short novella that is under a hundred pages. However, what makes The Pearl truly a great book is his critique of colonial society, and the interaction of Native Americans and colonists. Steinbeck emphasizes the differences between the colonists and the native Indians by using such symbols as the relationship between town and village, education, and instinct. Steinbeck also shows that he…...
John SteinbeckNative AmericansThe Pearl
John Steinbeck’s “The pearl”
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John Steinbeck's The Pearl is a tale of a poor Indian family who stumbles upon the greatest pearl in the world. Headed by a man named Kino and his supporting wife Juana, they both are determined to live a wealthy life no matter what the cost. Although the story is fictional, it is based on the unpleasant truths of life as we know it. Steinbeck reveals an array of irony like no other: Starting with Kino finding the pearl of…...
John SteinbeckThe Pearl
“The Pearl” by John Steinbeck: Main Characters
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Kino, the main character in the novel "The Pearl" is an example of a common man faced with the daily concerns and dangers of living in poverty. From the start to the end of the novel Kino develops drastically. At the beginning of the novel he is shown to be a kind and loyal husband but as the story continues he becomes an 'animal,' a man whom is driven by greed and willing do anything for money. When the story…...
CharacterJohn SteinbeckThe Pearl
An Analysis of The Pearl by John Steinbeck
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One of the primary styles of the novel, The Pearl, which was written by John Steinbeck, is the damaging force of greed. The author provided this concept in a range of methods in the story such as the usage parallelism of the imagery to the characters in the unique, the setting of the story that justifies the characters' actions, and the abrupt improvement of the characters. Essentially, the story takes location in depressed Mexican-Indian neighborhood in La Paz where the…...
John SteinbeckThe Pearl
Societal Issues in “The Pearl”
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Introduction/background of Steinbeck and the Pearl  Literature is called a mirror to society. The writer cannot escape himself from societal issues and influence. He has to accept the impact in one-way or the other. John Steinbeck’s “The Pearl” is also no exception. His characters, plot, action, style and themes all reveal some societal perspectives in explicit or implicit language. The Pearl by John Steinbeck seems like a very simple book as a parable on the societal issues. The story is…...
Social JusticeSocial StructureThe Pearl
The Pearl Novel: How Greed Can Deteriorate A Person
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Greed is a terrible thing in the world,in the story “The Pearl” a man and his family are tested when Kino and Juana’s son, Coyotito is stung by a scorpion but they can’t pay for medical treatment so they go and search for a pearl to have enough money for a doctor to look at their son. It turned out that the pearl was a terrible curse and caused Kino to turn insane. The author’s purpose in this story is…...
GreedNovelsThe Pearl
The Pearl – Pearl Diving
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In The Pearl, John Steinbeck describes pearl diving consisting of two ropes tied one to a stone and the other to a basket. The basket remained in the canoe while the rock went down under and lead him to the bottom of the water. "Kino had two ropes, one tied to a heavy stone and one to a basket. He stripped off his shirt and trousers and laid his hat in the bottom of the canoe. The water was oily…...
DivingThe Pearl
The City Dubrovnik- Pearl of the Adriatic
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On the Dalmatian coast of the Adriatic Sea, perches a city with origins that span nearly two millennia. The joining of two small towns, Dubrava and Laus, birthed the city of Dubrovnik. Dubrava was a community of Slavic immigrants, which was located at the foot of the woody Srd hill. Laus was a town on a little island off the southern Dalmatian coast. This town often gave shelter and protection to the Italian immigrants from the neighboring city of Cavtat.…...
CityThe Pearl
Compare and contrast Warming Her Pearls
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Duffy and Lochhead both write about love. Compare and contrast two poems taking into account of the methods which each poet uses to write. ‘Epithalamium’ by Lochhead and ‘Warming Her Pearls’ by Duffy both deal with the theme of love. An epithalamium is a form of poetry written for a bride on her wedding day; this poem explores the joys of marriage and the effect of the love the bride and groom have for each other. ‘Warming Her Pearls’ is…...
Compare And ContrastLoveThe Pearl
Compare and contrast two poems, Warming Her Pearls by Carol Ann Duffy and Epithalamium by Liz Lochhea
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Two poems that focus on love as a theme are Warming Her Pearls by Carol Ann Duffy and Epithalamium by Liz Lochhead. Warming her Pearls depicts a situation in which a servant speaks of her unrequited love for her mistress, whereas Epithalamium is a celebration of marriage. In examining how each poet writes about love, a good place to start is the titles of the poems. Warming Her Pearls is an ambiguous title that does not immediately relate to love.…...
Compare And ContrastLovePoemsPoetryThe Pearl
Pearl project: The inspiration of the picture description
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The image “Girl with a Pearl Earring” was created by talented Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer who lived and worked in the 17th century. This painting has an interesting legend and various titles. It was called “Girl in a turban,” “The young girl with a turban,” “Head of a young girl,” and “Head of a girl in a turban.” It is often named as the Dutch Mona Lisa or the Mona Lisa of the North. Vermeer painted his picture in 1665.…...
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Girl with a Pearl Earring
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In the novel Woman With A Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier, Griet deals with lots of obstacles which causes her identity to change. Though Griet begins as an innocent housemaid who has to follow orders, she begins establishing her own viewpoint and the ability to make choices. Griet changes from a household servant to having the courage to share her viewpoint to a fully grown lady, efficient in making her own choices. Lots of elements contribute to the modification in…...
GirlThe Pearl
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
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The book Pirates of the Caribbean, written by Irene Trimble is about the legend of a pirate ship called the Black Pearl its curse and the crews that fight for it. Jack Sparrow was once captain of the Black Pearl but now Barbossa is the captain. Jack and Will Turner are on a mission to take over the black pearl and save Elizabeth from Barbossa and his crew. Barbossa and his pirate crew are cursed. Because of the curse the…...
CaribbeanPiratesSparrowThe Pearl
The Scarlet Letter – Pearl
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Pearl is an ironic and contradictory symbolism of pure and gracefulness. It is ironic that she is the child born to two great sinners. The way Hawthorn creates Pearl is by combining great contradictions together. Pearl is a misbehaving and mischievous child always showered by praise and wrapped with great angelical beauty. Hawthorne begins to develop Pearl’s character by opening up with a short aphorism describing Pearl as a child with “no physical defects. He builds off this statement about…...
Scarlet LetterThe Pearl
Johannes Vermeer: Girl with a Pearl Earring
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Johannes Vermeer’s, “Girl with a Pearl Earring” was painted in 1665-66. It is oil on canvas painting of an ordinary girl that is turned sideways and appears that she is glancing over her left shoulder. Not too much is known about the girl, but there are speculations that it could be one of three people. Some think it is his daughter Maria; while others are torn between the daughter of Vermeer’s benefactor, Magdalena and a maiden he hired to help…...
GirlPaintingThe Pearl
Girl with Pearl Earing
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Art is the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance. Art has no limits and has no rules. It is purely what is in your mind and doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. It is the best form to express your feelings without telling the whole story. Johannes Vermeer is a man of many mysteries. No one is exactly sure what he looked like and…...
GirlPaintingThe Pearl
Ms. Pearl Wong – How to Be Successful Dancer
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A career defines who I am and what am I all about. It is true that a majority of people will choose to work for what pays and offers them the most, especially living in today’s economy. However, I believe that my chosen career path should base on the source of my passion and interest in order to ensure a long term success in life. Therefore, when it comes to my interest and passion, the first thing that came into…...
DanceThe Pearl
“The Pearl” by John Steinbeck
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Throughout the story "The Pearl", Steinbeck makes each event lead to another. Each event has its own cause and effect towards the protagonists of the story, Kino and Juana which is very significant to the plot of the story. All the major the events of the story create obstacles Kino and Juana must pass. These events create the main plot of the story and how it affects the protagonists. The beginning of the story starts off by John Stein introducing…...
John SteinbeckThe Pearl
The Pearl-John Steinbeck
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Symbolism embodies an abstract idea or concept by using an object or character. In the parable, The Pearl, Steinbeck uses symbolism extensively to create and develop the novel's themes. The pearl of the book's title is a symbol, which develops from a paradise of hopes and dreams, to a destructive centre of evil. The key symbol of the pearl generates the theme of the destructive nature of greed throughout the book. The doctor as a symbol develops the theme of…...
John SteinbeckThe Pearl
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Role of Greed in the Story

First, Coyotito, Kino’s son, is stung by a scorpion. Secondly, Kino and his wife, Juana, try to see a doctor, but they are turned down because they do not have sufficient funds. To save his son, Kino finds a pearl and tries to sell it. However, he is not successful in selling the pearl and is attacked. Kino does not respond to the first attack so lightly, so in a second attack from a man, Kino does not hesitate to kill the man. At the same time, Juana attempts to get rid of the pearl, but Kino came in and attacked her. In response to killing the man, Kino decides that it is best to leave the village with his family. At the same time, Kino and his family are tracked down. Kino tries to fight off the trackers, but Coyotito is shot in the head in response to a cry he let out. Finally, Kino and Juana decided to return to their village where Kino throws the pearl back to where he found it. In The Pearl, John Steinbeck communicates that greed can change a person’s innocence without the person realizing it.

At the beginning of the novella, Kino was described to be satisfied with his life even though he did not have much. For instance, “Kino squatted by the fire pit and rolled a hot corn-cake and dipped it in sauce and ate it. And he drank a little pulque and that was breakfast. That was the only breakfast he had ever known outside of feast days and one incredible fiesta on cookies that had nearly killed him” (Steinbeck 2). According to this quote, Kino lives a simple and poor lifestyle. Before this quote, Steinbeck stated that Kino’s family and their village lived in “brush houses,” so that means they have little to almost no money (2). He eats the same breakfast and on special occasions he has a different breakfast. Even though he had to eat and drink the same thing every morning, he did not complain about it. After Kino finds the pearl, Coyotito’s life seems to have been saved. So, Kino began to think about materialistic things like clothes and fishing tools that he could get now that he has a pearl. Kino also talked about having a wedding. One other thing Kino said that he wanted was a rifle, and after this becomes known, Steinbeck says, “For it is said that humans are never satisfied, that you give them one thing and they want something more” (12). In this quote, Steinbeck directly states that greed can cause a person to want things they had not even thought about in the first place. Before Kino even had a pearl, he did not want a wedding or new clothes. Kino was completely okay with the way his life was going and what he had. Now that Kino has one valuable possession, he wants more.

In this novella, having money means that you have power, but Kino did not care about that because that was not what he originally valued most. European society was depicted as greedy because of their values and actions. For example, the doctor only tends to those who have money when a doctor should provide care for every one (1). Once the news of Kino finding the pearl got to the doctor, the doctor claimed Kino as his client (11). When Kino mentions that he wants a rifle, a comparison can be made to the canoe that, “which was the one thing of value he owned in the world” (8). The canoe is important to Kino because it can be used as “a source of food” (8). Like the canoe, a rifle can be used in the same way. Kino wants to upgrade from a canoe to a rifle. However, a rifle can be used for other things such as killing. Suddenly, Kino wants the things that are valued by the people he claims to have hate towards because of his people’s mistreatment. Therefore, Kino believes that wealth can only be found in European society rather than his own.

Kino is no longer who he claims to be because of his greed taking over. In response to the offer the pearl buyer gave, Kino responds by saying that the pearl was worth more (25). When the pearl buyer offered “a thousand pesos” Kino could have accepted the offer (25). However, he did not and made a big deal out of it. Even though the amount may not have been much, Kino could have used it for the things he claimed to care about before the pearl came into the picture. Not only that, Kino understood that the pearl buyers offered the lowest price possible for pearls. Therefore, there was no point in trying to argue. Kino’s overreaction suggests that if he wants more money, he made himself look bad and caused a scene in front of everyone. Kino was known for being calm and collected, yet he acted the way he did. When Kino was in pursuit of Juana, “Kino moved sluggishly, arms and legs stirred like those of a crushed bug, and a thick muttering came from his mouth. Now, in an instant, Juana knew that the old life was gone forever. A dead man in the path and Kino’s knife, dark-bladed beside him, convinced her” (32).

As Kino’s greed grew, his relationship with Juana began to change. Kino and Juana seemed to be in tune with one another when Steinbeck says, “They had spoken once, but there is not need for speech if it is only a habit anyway. Kino sighed with satisfaction – and that was conversation” (1-2). When Steinbeck says this, we can infer that Kino and Juana have such a strong relationship that they do not even need to talk. Both Kino and Juana can understand each other’s emotions and feelings without even saying a single word. The strain on their relationship is seen when Juana grabs the pearl when Kino is not looking to get rid of it, “Her arm was up to throw when he leaped at her and caught her arm and wrenched the pearl from her. He struck her in the face with his clenched fist and she fell among the boulders, and he kicked her in the side” (31). Juana claimed that the pearl was evil, but it was Kino’s greed that was the true evil. Kino and Juana’s relationship was tested with the presence of the pearl. If Kino truly loved Juana, he would not have laid a finger on her especially when he hits her again once she is down. At the beginning of the novella, Kino valued his family above everything else, yet he brought danger to Juana and Coyotito because he was unable to control himself.

Moral of the Story

Greed is defined as, “a selfish and excessive desire for more of something (such as money) than is needed” (“Greed”). Steinbeck’s novella, The Pearl, goes into depth about what greed can do to an individual and what the lasting effects are. Kino lost himself and Coyotito because he got greedy and wanted more rather than acknowledging what he already had. Greed is present in everyone whether it be influential or not as influential in our lives, but if it is highly influential, bad things can happen. When we allow greed to take complete control, we can lose ourselves, things we value most, and loved ones in the process. We as humans should focus on self-control so that we can prevent greed from possibly ruining our lives especially since it can happen without us even realizing it.

FAQ about The Pearl

The Pearl Novel: How Greed Can Deteriorate A Person
...Personally, I can relate to this theme. There are so many things that I spend to much time on. For example, my phone, sometimes it seems like a great privilege to have, yet sometimes I catch myself on it more than I should be. This book and theme rem...
Ms. Pearl Wong – How to Be Successful Dancer
...Conclusion This interview has provided me a clearer view on my future career path and also increased my knowledge in the requirements of being an entrepreneur. Doing what I love to do and doing the best is always what I am trying to achieve in the fu...

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