Deeper Levels of Meaning in The Pearl by Steinbeck and The Law of Life by London

March 18, 2021 by Essay Writer

“The proper function of a man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time.” – Jack London

Both amazing writers John Steinbeck and Jack London have made amazing stories who use theme and motif to create deeper levels of meaning in their work. An important theme in The Pearl from John Steinbeck is greed. Avarice is an emotion that touches almost everyone in The Pearl, once everyone hears about the pearl, everyone wanted it then. Another example of greed in the book is the doctor. He accepted to cure Coyotito after he heard about Kino finding a pearl. Before, the doctor had never wanted to help cure Coyotito because their family was poor and subsided in a small brush house. Also in the story Just Meat from Jack London, Jim became greedy and wanted to kill Matt using Strychnine, poison that was used to kill rats so he can take the diamonds for himself, but then Matt put poison in Jims food and in result both of them died from the poison. Two other themes that were in Jack London’s and John Steinbeck’s stories were selfishness and man vs. nature.

Since many people were very selfish that a poor villager Kino had found a pearl, everyone who heard about it suddenly want to steal it. People were willing to risk their lives just to get their filthy hands on a shiny valuable pearl. Once, people who wanted to steal the Pearl had come to sneakily steal it from Kino but instead lost their life after Kino had killed him to show to Juana that he is a man. Juana, Kino’s wife wanted to throw the pearl back in the ocean to stop the bad luck and things happening to them. Later because of the pearl’s bad luck, their son Coyotito gets shot from a rifle when a hunter thought Coyotito’s scream was a Coyote. After this incident Kino also agrees to Juana and throws the Pearl back into the Ocean so their bad luck would sweep away.

On the other hand, Jack London has also made some great stories such as The Law of Life. This story also shows power and is mainly about man vs. nature, just like when Coyotito gets stung by a scorpion in the Pearl and how Koskoosh was fighting his old age while trying to stay alive in the cold weather in the Law of Life. They both show power and how they both have to survive in the nature. Kino is surviving from all the people who are trying to steal the pearl from him while in the law of life the characters are trying to survive in the snow where it was very cold.

Both authors John Steinbeck and Jack London have similar ways of thinking that takes place in their stories. They both think deeply before they even start to write their stories. Overall, these two great writers have made wonderful and thoughtful stories and have made a triumphant in their career.

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