VCE English: Unit 1
Text Response: Girl With a Pearl Earring
"Take care to remain yourself" This text shows that remaining true to oneself must be balanced with family obligations. Discuss
Tracy Chevalier's novel Girl With a Pearl Earring explores the notion of self' thorough the main character Griet and her journey from innocence to experience. Firstly, we see throughout the novel Griet is aware she has much to learn about the world. Furthermore, under Vermeer's roof, Griet's self exploration spans many realms; artistically, emotionally, morally and religiously, and she emerges a more complex and mature character. Moreover, Vermeer assists Griet to expand her mind and perspective on life. Finally, Griet emerge from
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Ultimately, Griet emerges from Vermeer's house a grown women whose "eyes are not so wide and innocent" Marrying Pieter is the "choice she knew she had to make" and through this action Griet manages to regain dignity and security in her life as a wife and mother. We see how Griet's life now has a focus on her family and she is no longer interested in the lives of others. Alongside her loss of innocence and curiosity. Griet's artistic ability has been stifled by her new life and "sensible" attitude as she no longer has time "to look out and around her". The most poignant moment where we see that Griet remains true to herself is the means in which she reclaims her independence. The earrings that Vermeer left her are not only a symbol of Vermeer's repentance for his near destruction of Griet, but also serve to enable Griet to repay 15 guilders to Pieter and keep five for herself which she would "never spend". Having settled all debts and come out with a bit of money to spare, Griet has gained both financial and emotional independence and ultimately remained true to herself.
In conclusion, Chevalier's novel highlights the malleability of human character as we witness Griet's coming of age. We see that her experiences at Vermeer's house do not transform her into "another Griet", but rather expose another aspect of Griet that we weren't aware of in the beginning. We see that