The Pearl

This novel is based on an old folktale, told many times. Why do you think Steinbeck believed his readers would be interested in an old story like this?

Book Critique-- Good critics discuss the entertainment value of a book, but they also look deeper into the elements of literature. Be a critic.

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Folktales are often the source of important life lessons. While the story is a good story in and of itself (excellent plot development, creation of a narrative hook when certain events take place, suspense and excitement), it also teaches us much about the nature of mankind. We see mankind as evil and greedy, aspects of humanity that Kino had never experienced. While he is, like the Wedding Guest in "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," older and wiser and sadder after he has this experience, he also shows us what we can expect. We would be lucky if, by chance, we could learn the lesson without having to experience the sadness and the heartbreak.