The Pearl:theme of greed

January 9, 2017 General Studies

Show how the theme of Greed is illustrated through the characters and events in the Pearl.

John Steinbeck develops the theme of greed through the characters and events in ” the Pearl”. Ever since the finding of the pearl, it appears to me that the greed of man had grown readily throughout time.

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When the news of the pearl reached the town, everybody starts to fantasize and dream of the “impossible”. “Every man suddenly became related to Kino’s pearl. From here. We could see the power of “the pearl”, the power of wealth and the greed of the people.

Human greed is illustrated through the character, Kino. He is driven by greed, so much so that he could even see “dream forms” in the pearl. He could see through the pearl, the image of them getting married in the church, and Coyotito wore “a blue sailor suit from the United States”, which was the model of a trend. When he wants something, he did not stop there, he continued to dream of the impossible, for “humans are never satisfied”. He even wanted a “rifle”, which was once considered impossible to them. Instead of thinking how the pearl might help to save the “needy” from starvation and instead of the thoughts of donating the pearl to the church like what his fellowmen and forefathers had done, he only thought of how the pearl could benefit him and his family, of how they could break out of poverty, break out of their present social status. Even in his sleep, he “dreamed that Coyotito could read, that one of his own people could tell him the truth of things”, showing how greed could overcome him even during his resting period.

The doctor is an embodiment of greed. We get the first impression that he is manifested with greed through his mind set of a “civilised living”. His idea of a “civilized living” meant, “on a small income he had been able to keep a mistress and eat in restaurants”. As a doctor, it should be his duty and responsibility to provide utmost care and concern to his patients and treat them if it were within his capability regardless of their social status.


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