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A Relationship Between Wealth and Corruption
John Steinback once wrote, "There are only good and bad things and black and white things and good and evil things and no in-between anywhere." As Steinback said, there is no "in-between," like how there is no in-between between the rich and the poor. However, there is always that thought of what would happen when someone poor tried to cross the in-between border to become rich. Well, The Pearl, a novel by John Steinback, bases the story's world around that thought. The allegorical world in The Pearl, demonstrates the thought for material wealth can lead to change in an area’s social stratification, corruption, destruction and the downfall of a man's spirit and virtue.
Within the allegory, there lies a great item of wealth, the pearl of the world that has powers that cause hopes to lead into destruction. Kino, the main character in The Pearl, mentions that pearls are accidents, and if you found a pearl it was because of luck and meant God was rewarding you, and later finds the pearl of the world soon after (16). Considering that Kino’s specific pearl is mentioned as, the pearl of the world and great pearl, it is suggested that Kino’s pearl is greater than other pearls. The pearl of the world, found because of luck and God, gives Kino the opportunity to rise and cross the border between rich people and poor people. Kino realizes this opportunity when he sees his dreams form in the surface of the pearl and goes on to visualize such dreams such as Coyotito attending school, him and Juana being married, and fancy new clothes (24). Kino’s visions of a new appearance, marriage and education for Coyotito all relate to material wealth. These hopes for material wealth is offered by Kino’s pearl, hence, Kino’s pearl must represent material wealth and hopes. Although the pearl represents hopes, hopes can be crushed as shown when Kino and Juana walked back to their village; Kino had a rifle across his arm and Juana had her shawl...
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