The Pearl

What kind of lifestyle do they have?

In chapter one what kind of lifestyle do they have ?

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The Pearl takes place among an impoverished Mexican-Indian community in La Paz. Although the story involves essentially only this couple, Steinbeck uses Kino and Juana as symbolic of the community in which they live. Steinbeck constructs Kino as an everyman with concerns typical of persons of all social stations. As shown by his encounter with the scorpion, Kino is a devoted father who dotes on his infant son and adores his wife. Quite importantly, as the story begins Kino is perfectly content with his situation, despite his lack of material possessions and difficult existence. As Kino watches his family, he believes that this is the "whole," the entirety of everything he really needs. This is significant, for this early contentment contrasts with the later panic that Kino and Juana will feel once they receive hope for a better future. Juana, whose name even translates into Œwoman,' symbolizes a feminine ideal that complements Kino's masculine prototype.