Many of the world’s issues revolve around wealth and greed. In The Pearl, by John Steinbeck, he tells the tragic story of a poverty stricken young couple and their baby who suffer from the consequences of wanting. After finding “the pearl of the world,” Kino and Juana are plagued with violence and misfortune that surround the pearl and its value, ultimately leading to the baby’s death. John Steinbeck’s intended theme of The Pearl is that greed for materialistic possessions can cloud judgment and emotions.
During the story, Kino makes unwise decisions based on chances the pearl could bring. For example, after horrible events have happened, Kino still chooses to keep the pearl when he ...view middle of the document...
His choice of action might solve complications at the moment, but it will come back to haunt him. Holding on to the type of life the pearl presents leads Kino to turn down wrong paths.
Kino and Juana’s tale shows that greed makes people blind with strong emotions. For example, when Juana tries to rid of the pearl, Kino acts violently towards her, “And rage surged in Kino… he struck her in the face with his clenched fist and she fell among the boulders and he kicked her in the side.” (Steinbeck 613) Kino’s possessiveness for the pearl causes him to turn against his family that he loves. His family is left in ruins because of it. In addition, after their hut is set on fire, Juana tells Kino how it happened, “’It was torn up and the floor dug- even the baby’s box was turned out, and as I looked they put fire to the outside.’” (Steinbeck 615) The “they” Juana is referring to are men who are sent to find and retrieve the pearl, no matter the cost. The thought of money is causing men to change who they are and harm other human beings. Wealth can warp one’s feelings and make it difficult to make the appropriate, honorable actions.
Judgment and emotions can be misguided when greed takes root in the soul. Kino makes decisions based on what could be, not what the reality is. These unknown chances cause him to act on wild desire and anger. Even though wealth can hold the opportunity of fulfilling life long dreams, it is not wise to get lost in the possible future and lose oneself in the present.