The Pearlby John Steinbeck Published 08 Jan 2002
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Like his father and grandfather before him, Kino is a poor diver, gathering pearls from the gulf beds that once brought great wealth to the kings of Spain and now provide Kino, Juana, and their infant son with meager subsistence. Then, on a day like any other, Kino emerges from the sea with a pearl as large as a sea gull’s egg, as “perfect as the moon.” With the pearl comes hope, the promise of comfort and of security…
A story of classic simplicity, based on a Mexican folk tale, The Pearl explores the secrets of man’s nature, greed, the darkest depths of evil, and the luminous possibilities of love.
"The Pearl" Reviews
The pearl, John Ernst Steinbeck (1902 - 1968)
The Pearl is a novella by American author John Steinbeck, first published in 1947. It is the story of a pearl diver, Kino, and explores man's nature as well as greed, defiance of societal norms, and evil. Steinbeck's inspiration was a Mexican folk tale from La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico, which he had heard in a visit to the formerly pearl-rich region in 1940. In 1947, it was adapted into a Mexican film named La perla and in 1987 into a cult Kannada movie Ondu Muttina Kathe. The story is one of Steinbeck's most popular books and has been widely used in high school classes. The Pearl is sometimes considered a parable. When Coyotito, an infant, is stung by a scorpion, Kino, his father, must find a way to pay the town doctor to treat him. The doctor denies Kino, an indigenous fisherman, out of racism, which enrages him. Shortly thereafter, Kino discovers an enormous, lucid pearl which he is ready to sell to pay the doctor. Everyone calls it "the Pearl of the World," and many people begin to covet it. That very night Kino is attacked in his own home. Determined to get rid of the pearl, the following morning he takes it to the pearl auction in town; however, the auction is actually a corrupt sham and always has been. The buyers normally fake auction each pearl and pretend bid against each other, but in reality they are all paid a salary by a single man, they all turn the pearls over to him and he resells them outside the village, thus cheating the locals. The corrupt pearl buyers try to convince Kino that the pearl is the equivalent of "fool's gold" and they refuse to pay any more than incredibly low amounts of money. Kino decides to go over the mountains to the capital to find a better price. Juana, Kino's wife, sees that the pearl brings darkness and greed, and sneaks out of the house late at night to throw it back into the ocean. When Kino catches her, he furiously attacks her and leaves her on the beach. ...
Characters: Kino, Juana, Coyotito, Juan Tomas, Apolonia
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز دوم ماه اکتبر سال 1974 میلادی
عنوان: مروارید؛ اثر: جان اشتاین بک؛ مترجم: محمدجعفر محجوب؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، آرمان، چاپ چهارم 1349، در 203 ص، چاپ پنجم 1353؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان آمریکایی - سده 20 م
داستان یک مکزیکی فقیر است، که بزرگترین مروارید دنیا را مییابد، و در دل، آرزوی خوشبختی خانواده خویش را دارد. اما گنج، ارمغانی جز نابودی آنها ندارد. شخصیتها: «کینو، شخصیتی مغرور و غواصی فقیر»، «جوآنا همسر کینو شخصیتی اندیشمند که نشانه های هشدار را که کینو از پذیرفتن آنها خودداری میکند، میبیند. و به خاطر وفاداری، و فرمانبرداری دیرینه از همسر، یارای دیگر کردن آنها را ندارد»؛ «کویوتیتو، پسربچه کینو و جوآنا، که در آغاز داستان، عقربی او را نیش میزند»؛ «جوآن توماس، برادر کینو»؛ «دکتر، شخصیتی که فاقد ارزشهای اخلاقی ست. او از درمان کویوتیتو، تنها برای اینکه آنها پولی ندارند، سر باز میزند. اما پس از شنیدن خبر یافتن گنجی گرانبها، توسط کینو، خود جهت درمان بچه، به خانه ی آنها میرود»؛ ا. شربیانی
goodreads david writes this: I'm convinced that the general besmirchers of Steinbeck are fucktards, asswads, and vibrating pustules.
it's nice as a reader (bad, i guess, as a reviewer) when a writer achieves can-do-no-wrong status. reading steinbeck i feel less distance between the writer -> his words -> myself than with nearly any other writer. his prose stylings can't touch his contemporaries, his structure and pacing can be sloppy, he's sentimental, preachy, overly didactic, and his themes arrive with the subtlety of a sledgehammer to the kneecaps.
but who gives a shit? i'm not grading a paper. he gets an A+ and a gold star at the top of his paper for cannery row, possibly the most complete and interesting fictional world i've encountered; travels with charley, my all-time favorite travelogue; and grapes of wrath, a flawed but incredibly moving masterpiece.
and the pearl... a clumsy and sweet fable, overwrought and obvious -- definitely a lesser work. but it's steinbeck writing and he's filled with such love for mankind, wonder at nature, and joy at the strange eccentric and eclectic that, even if upon reading the remainder of his writings i find the literary equivalent of sex with goodreads david... steinbeck remains untouchable.
This is the first Steinbeck's book I've read, though it won't be the last, despite the horrible first impression. I hate everything in this book - from it's anticlimactic writing to its incommodious characters. There is nothing worth praise in here. After I reached the end, I've been so angry and almost ready to punch something.
Poor Indian, who lives in the South America with his wife and their baby, finds giant pearl, decides to sell it and then use the money to buy medicine for his child, who just got bitten by a scorpion. The selling part didn't go well, shit gets real, people die without any real purpose and it all happens in about 90 pages. In between there are large amounts of racism, bigotry and misogyny.
The reason bad things happen to this poor family is because they wanted a better life and the guy didn't want to let anyone stop him from getting it. Basically, his wife is superstitious, tells him the pearl is evil, he doesn't listen, so tragedy happens. Steinbeck is actually telling us to be satisfied with what we are and not try seeking for better options because we're inevitably going to fail in the end. Also, he justifies when husband beats his wife and she obediently suffers because HE'S A MAN AND HE KNOWS BEST. Maybe I should've tried more to read between lines but this was too much for me. Try and see it for yourself.
The narrator literally has no personality, so I don't know how I'm supposed to empathise with any of his struggles. He had some abrupt reactions, but when it comes to recognisable emotions he's pretty blank. I hate it when I can't connect to the main characters or ANY of the characters. And their difficulties were severe.
Steinbeck does it again. All my experiences with his writings have been fantastic. Every word, every description, every plot point, every twist - perfect!
The Pearl is very short but very amazing. It is a tale of greed and how people around wealth or who come upon sudden wealth are affected. Many of us think our life would be perfect if we won the lottery, but I think all of us could benefit from the lessons in this story.
I picked this book now because I am on vacation in Hatteras, NC, and the locations along the sea seemed like they would blend well with my surroundings. I was correct! Many key scenes occur at or in the ocean, and reading this while my toes were in the surf added so much to the atmosphere.
Do yourself a favor and take a quiet afternoon, get away to somewhere (a beach if possible), and read The Pearl. Your literary senses will thank you!
من اروع ما فرأت ، هل كانت اللؤلؤة تحمل اغنية الشيطان كما عبر عنها المؤلف.
الفقير، الصياد الباحث عن الآليء الذي لا يملك علاج ابنه يعثر على لؤلؤة وجد فيها فرصته وفرصة ابنه في حياة حريمه وأهمها التعليم وإعلان زواجه في الكنيسة.
فجأة زاره القس والطبيب الذي رفض علاج ابنه تغيرت نظرة الناس له .
وأكنه من الهنود سكان المكسيك الأصليين الذين منذ ٤٠٠ عاما تعودوا على الطاعه فهذا هو نظام الحياة وتآمروا عليه بسعر اللؤلؤة ولكنه تمرد وأعلن هدم الطاعه.
أراد ان يتشبث بحقك في حياة كريمة ، رغم محاولة زوجته التخلص منها بعد محاولات لسرقتها ودفاع مستميت من زوجها.
صراع انساني داخلي عميق بين التطلع للمستقبل الغامض او الرضى والقناعة بحياته البسيطة.
ما عجبني في الرواية ان المؤلف يقوم بوصف دقيق للأماكن والجو السائد كإنه يعد مسرحا وعليك الانتظار لتشاهد الحدث الكبير
اعتقد انها تستحق اكثر من ٥ نجمات.
This is a deceptively simple Mexican fable. It's written by Steinbeck, so of course, it's written beautifully. The story is pretty straightforward--poor, uneducated peasant finds monster pearl and now has everything previously denied to him within his grasp. Or does he?
*** SPOILERS AHEAD ***
Kino is happy despite his poverty and his low position on the social scale. He and the other natives in his village are under the control of the wealthy Spanish people who have taken up residence in the nicer part of town. The wealthy Spanish people live comfortably in their brick and plaster houses, exercising an iron control over the laws and economics of the town, while Kino and his ilk live in brush huts. Kino, however, is happily married to Juana, and they are both content in their relationship and with their beloved first-born son, Coyotito. The serpent enters their tropical Eden in the form of a scorpion that stings the baby--a possible death sentence. When the Spanish doctor refuses to treat him because of their poverty, Kino goes pearl-diving, laboring under tremendous emotional agony. He finds a large, obviously old oyster, and it yields a magnificent pearl--the pearl of the world. It is at this moment, when Fate drops a fortune into Kino's hands, that his real troubles begin.
Okay, so as we follow Kino through the increasing complexity of the problems that develop as a result of his ownership of this pearl, many issues are raised. What, exactly, is Steinbeck saying? The old adage, "Be careful what you wish for," comes to mind, and is certainly apropos. I have read that some see this as a critique of capitalism and the American Dream. Certainly Kino seems to have achieved the American Dream when that pearl drops into his hand. But that dream, his good fortune, is ruthlessly hunted and destroyed, piece by piece, by faceless individuals who could be anyone--his friends, his neighbors, or the greedy members of the wealthy community. So Steinbeck could be saying that the American Dream is a myth, that the system is stacked against those who need it the most. What about capitalism? Under the principles of capitalism, Kino should have been rewarded for bringing such a rare, desirable object into the marketplace. Instead, it is treated with contempt by those who should have been most interested in acquiring it. In reality, true capitalism was never really at play. There was no competition; the market was controlled by one person. So is Steinbeck saying that capitalism, too, is a myth? That human corruption will always interfere with the free and unimpeded flow of the marketplace?
Greed is condemned in all forms, and everyone seems to feel it. After the news of Kino's find circulates, various people all start calculating how his profits can personally affect them. The doctor belatedly hurries to the side of the baby, eager to charge exorbitant fees for his assistance; the priest begins to mull pressuring Kino to donate to the church for repairs; and even the town beggars begin to anticipate Kino's generosity to them. But is Kino guilty of greed, as well? Is he reaching for too much, demanding too much, of life? He is certainly punished for attempting to have more.
I teach my students that in order to determine the themes of a text, you look at what happens to the main characters. By any interpretation, the themes of this story are bleak. Either Kino allows the pearl to give him delusions of grandeur that cause him to attempt to fly too close to the sun, and, like Icarus, tumble to his doom, or Kino is an example of how a poor, uneducated person has no chance of prevailing against the system and bettering his life in any way. Not only will he not be permitted to move up, but he will be severely punished for the attempt.
I personally believe it is the latter theme that is best supported by the text, but I don't believe it is a true statement about the condition of the American Dream in our country today. While breaking free of poverty is difficult to do and is a complex issue, I do not believe that people attempting to do so are faced with certain defeat, as Kino was. There are people who accomplish it, so it is doable.
Steinbeck, like Charles Dickens, used his writing to fight fiercely for the rights of the poor and downtrodden, and I think that the enduring nature of their works are a testament to how very effective they were.