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Written Commentary - The Pearl

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This prose is about the discrimination of people, specifically between colonizers and the colonised. In this prose, the colonizer takes the form of the doctor, and the colonized are represented by Kino, Juana and Coyotito. It illustrates the rampant discrimination of different races and shows us there is a clear line drawn between the colonizers and the colonised. This is further emphasised and expressed by the line in the first paragraph, 'the doctor was not of his people'. The passage starts with 'Kino hesitated a moment'. He did so because the doctor he wanted to visit was not of his race. On the contrary, he is of a race for 'nearly four hundred years had beaten and starved and robbed and despised Kino's race, and frightened it too'. This discrimination has escalated so badly that when Kino approaches the doctor's gate, he feels weak, afraid and angry. Though he may not be physically weak as compared to the doctor, we assume that 'weak' refers to Kino feeling inferior. Kino could 'kill the doctor more easily than he could talk to him', showing us how intense Kino's hatred for the doctor is. ...read more.


The fact that he is unhappy before he even learns of Kino's visit sort of foreshadows that Kino's request for Coyotito to see the doctor will be unsuccessful. The furnishing of the room is 'heavy and dark and gloomy', and gives off a completely different feel. It gives a very hostile feel and is completely different from the warm scenery outside in the garden. This might be the writer trying to reflect the doctor's personality through the mood and setting of the story. It may also be trying to show that the doctor is a doctor (saving lives are supposed to be their duty) only by appearance but his personality reflects otherwise. The writer also tells us that for a short period of time the doctor lived in France (the doctor had once for a short time been a part of the great world and his whole subsequent life was memory and longing for France). The doctor was only in France for a short while and was removed from his 'civilized living' for an unknown reason. However, we may infer that due to his lousy character, France rejected him as a citizen, which is why he has to work among Kino's race. ...read more.


The writer characterizes the doctor as a fat, cold, unwelcoming person who views money more than saving human lives. He makes the doctor regard Indians as animals and adds a self-glorified attitude to his personality. I personally feel that the writer's purpose in characterizing the doctor so was to show a strong discriminator against the Indians, as well as to make readers hate him. When the reader hates the doctor, he/she will sympathize more with Kino. If that was the purpose of characterizing the doctor in such a way, the writer is completely successful. The mood and setting of this extract, in my personal opinion, is to highlight the discrimination of the Indians, or create imagery that highlights the discrimination of Indians. The outside of the house is warm but the inside is dark and gloomy. The crowd gathers to see Kino's attempt to get medical treatment for his baby but disperses in shame when they see he is rejected. The mood and setting of this story emphasizes on the passage's theme on discrimination and prejudice. In conclusion, the writing of this story shows us that the writer sympathises with Kino and wants us to sympathize with Kino too. It shows us that the writer has a negative attitude towards discrimination and wants to make it known to the world so something can be done. ...read more.

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