The Pearl: Setting
Over the course of John Steinbeck’s The Pearl, the description of the setting changes dramatically over the course of the novel. The protagonist of the story, Kino, was a simple and happy man, in the beginning. He is a member of a tribe, at the out skirts of his town. In the town, there lives Spaniards who are much wealthier then him. Out through the story, he seems to be possessing greed in his soul. As this happens, the setting of the book changes as mirrored in Kino’s character. In the beginning, everything was calm in Kino’s tone. By the middle, Kino owns one of the largest pearls ever seen in La Paz, shown as destruction in his wife, Juan’s, eyes. By the end, Kino sees what destruction the pearl has brought upon his family.
In the beginning, Kino’s neighborhood is demonstrated as begin very peaceful. This reflects his mood at the time. “ The stars still shone and the day had drawn only a pale wash of light in the lower sky to the east. Outside the brush houses in the tuna clump, a convey of little birds chattered and flurried with their wings (1)”. This reflects how peaceful his mornings are. How he is so in touch with nature. But the other side of town is much different. “ They came to the place where the brush houses stopped and the city of stone and plaster began, the city of harsh otter walls and inner cool gardens. They heard from the secret gardens the singing of the caged birds and heard the splash of cooling water on hot flagstones (8)”. This quote compares Kino’s lifestyle to others. For example, Kino has streets of dirt to the Spaniards rich paved streets. Also, where Kino lives, his birds are free, but the Spaniards cage their birds. By the end of the story, the setting makes a drastic yet expecting change. Kino’s mood and setting has changed now. “ in La Paz, it was known in the early morning through the whole town that Kino was going to sell his pearl that day (41)”. The mood seems to be uneasy. Everyone seems to be...
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