The Earth Essay

2285 Words10 Pages
The Good Earth: Filial Piety: a Curse, or a Blessing? Summary: In Pearl Buck's novel, The Good Earth, she implies that pre-Revolutionary Chinese people feel obligations: to treat their elders' wants as preeminent priorities, to use capital punishment to discipline their children, and to allow their elders to select their spouses and careers for them. Filial Piety: A Curse, or a Blessing" In Pearl Buck's novel, The Good Earth, she implies that pre-Revolutionary Chinese people feel obligations: to treat their elders' wants as preeminent priorities, to use capital punishment to discipline their children, and to allow their elders to select their spouses and careers for them. Buck also shows how these obligations: partially cause Wang Lung's children to feel apathetic towards their land, and also how these obligations spark a chain reaction that eventually causes Wang Lung to fear and feel jealous of his third son. These obligations also contribute to the starvation of Wang Lung's children, O-lan's act of infanticide, Wang Lung's difficulty in asserting himself against others, and lastly, Wang Lung's love for his land up till his old age. To prove these generalizations, we will first reexamine previous incidences of filial piety as portrayed in The Good Earth. Second, we will trace the chain of events that these specific obligations set off to see why these consequence occur to Wang Lung. Wang Lung's obligations to his elders show how the needs of the elders demand preeminent attention. When the uncles comes to Wang Lung's house ( which now stands rich from the jewels that O-lan steals from the Nanking house during the raid) during the family's early meal, he "helped himself freely to rice and dried salt fish." Then, the uncle has Wang Lung lead him to the father's bed, where he, " lifted the quilts and felt the good cloth...and ..was asleep.." Wang Lung

More about The Earth Essay

Open Document