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It is also seen as the central idea running throughout the story. Authors and writers highlight some central ideas that run parallel in stories or work of prose to discuss human issues. A novel may have one or more themes which are related to the experiences the characters undergo. The themes are brought out through the actions of the characters to the situations in the story. In The Pearl the author brings out the human dimensions through the experiences of Kino and his family. The Pearl is a novel which deals with hope and despair. The story reveals the struggles Kino and his family undergo and their hope for a better future. Although Kino finds the greatest pearl in the world it only leads to greater misfortunes, sufferings and a tragic end. The Pearl brings out human issues which relate to poverty, greed, good versus evil, oppression, and the struggle for survival and freedom. Let’s look at some of these themes that are evident in the novel. Hope The Pearl is a novel which shows the power of hope in people. Kino sees a larger meaning to life after discovering the pearl. The pearl is a symbol of hope. Kino knows that his family would be able to look forward to a brighter future. He is able to bring his family out from the clutches of poverty and sufferings. Kino wants his son Coyotito to be educated: to go through formal education and be knowledgeable. Kino visualises a great life ahead: fine clothes, necessities and luxuries. Throughout the story, the power of hope, makes the people look forward to life. Kino is very hopeful that he will be able to break away from all the miseries, sufferings, and uncertainties he and his family face. The theme of hope runs throughout the story and drives Kino to believe that success is within reach. The feeling of hope is overwhelming in the novel.
THEMES Despair The theme of despair is also evident in the story. The doctor. . Greed makes these people behave cruel. selfish. lifeless back to La Paz. They are only interested in the pearl as they know its true value. The meaning of life is blurred as they realise that their precious child is dead. The feeling of despair makes them decide to throw the pearl back into the sea. The pearl buyers are greedy to want someone’s fortune and conspire to cheat Kino. They want the pearl for their own evil purpose. He wants the pearl and offers to keep it safely for Kino at his place. are out to get his pearl. who attack Kino. Kino and Juana despair towards the end of the story. He pretends to treat Coyotito with evil plans in his mind. the attackers and the trackers are greedy. The main characters. Kino is not able to secure a bright future for his family. becomes meaningless. It is the feeling of losing all hope and seeing the end to the meaning of life. He is self-centred and does not want to treat Coyotito because Kino cannot pay him for his service. and good deeds are drowned in the pursuit of fortune. inhuman. They are hopeless as they bring their only son Coyotito. The doctor wants to live a great life in France and is materialistic. The doctor is greedy to want someone else’s possession. The attackers. Greed Greed is seen as a negative quality in people. There are a number of characters in the novel who are greedy. The pearl which Kino hoped would bring meaningful change and success. the pearl buyers. The feeling of despair marks the end of the story. irresponsible. Their hope is crushed. Juana’s hysterical cry is none other than the cry of death. The pearl buyers are desperate to cheat Kino because of greed. The trackers look for Kino and his family with one thing in their mind: to get the pearl. Despair relates to the feeling of hopelessness. The actions of the above characters are driven by greed. They will not hesitate to kill anyone in their way. irrational.
for centuries. They are selfish and self-centred. They want the pearl as they know it is valuable. It is also found in The Pearl. who have over time undergone hardships. On the other hand. Apolonia. The pearl brings all the miseries to Kino and his family. and their neighbours are innocent people who depend on the sea for fish and pearl. The protagonists (Kino and Juana) represent good. Kino realises the pearl is evil and knows that it is better to get rid of evil than to keep it with him. They conspire to cheat the poor fisherman knowing that he is innocent. Juana. The pearl buyers are evil as they try to cheat Kino by offering him very low prices for his pearl. pearl buyers. attackers and trackers are evil-minded people. Kino and Juana become homeless and flee the village as fugitives. They set out to track and even kill Kino and his family. and throws the pearl back into the sea. They represent evil. He does not accept the pearl . Kino. He is too materialistic. Kino does not give up easily. They are simple people. The pearl is also a symbol of evil. Juan Tomas. They damage his canoe and burn his brush house. where he would be able to do as he wishes. In the end. Juana warns Kino that the pearl is evil.THEMES Good versus Evil The theme of good versus evil is found in most novels. The doctor wishes to own the pearl for his own selfish needs. causing great sufferings and miseries to them. The actions of the characters in the novel allow the readers to distinguish between good and evil. They work hard and live in a close-knit community. But. but lead an honest life. Evil minds cause Kino and his family to suffer. Intruders attack Kino to get the pearl. He treats Coyotito and offers to safeguard the pearl for Kino. They belong to a race of people who have taken advantage of Kino’s people. the doctor. He longs to live in France. It will destroy them but Kino sees the pearl as a means to a bright future. The trackers are merciless killers. he has his own evil plans.
The pearl which Kino finds is the answer to the problem.buyers’ offers. THEMES The struggle for survival and freedom The theme of struggle for survival and freedom is also evident in the novel. They live a simple and primitive life. he is not able to get them out from the cycle of life: He is not able to free his family. He also kills three evil trackers who are out to get him and his family. Kino fights an intruder who tries to steal his pearl. Kino and his people are innocent. The older order of life makes him and his people trapped without having better opportunities. He wants the future generation to have a better life and enjoy greater freedom. Thus. they do not have formal education and have to depend on others to get information or know about important matters. Kino struggles to make it in life. the struggle of the people to have a better life for them and future generations are highlighted in the novel. The theme of survival and freedom runs throughout the story. His struggles have no meaning in the end. But. This has been going on for centuries. He defies them and plans to go to the capital to sell his pearl. suppressed and do not have many opportunities in life. They belong to the lower socio-economic group. Kino’s struggles are symbolic of the struggles of his people for survival and freedom. He wishes to move away from the older order of life. Kino kills a man in self-defense. They work hard to make a decent income. Kino sees a greater meaning to life: a brighter future and freedom. Thus. Kino's people are not able to enjoy better things in life. The answer to their sufferings and uncertainties is wealth. He knows that education would bring changes to society. Many of his people are beggars too. He wants his son to be set free from all the sufferings he and his people are undergoing. Kino's people are poor. . All these actions show that good overcomes evil. They work very hard but are not able to escape from their miseries and sufferings.
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