Glossary of Language and Literature 1-90
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- What year was The Good Earth published?
- What year did Pearl Buck die?
- What were Pearl Buck's parents doing in China?
- They were missionaries.
- What occupation did Pearl Buck's husband have, related to the subject of The Good Earth?
- He was an agricultural advisor.
- How is Pearl Buck's work The House of Earth related to The Good Earth?
- It is a trilogy of The Good Earth and its two sequels.
- The Good Earth can be called a roman -fleuve. What is the definition of a roman-fleuve?
- a novel that follows the fortunes of a family or other group
- Name two of three important literary prizes won by Pearl Buck.
- the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the William Dean Howells medal
- What unusual thing does Wang Lung do when he rises on his wedding day,in preparation
for his marriage?
- He washes his entire body.
- How did O-lan come to be in the House of Hwang?
- Her parents sold her because there was a famine.
- What senior person in the House of Hwang does Wang Lung have to speak to before he can take O-lan away?
- The Old Mistress (or Ancient Mistress)
- What special treat does Wang Lung buy for O-lan on their wedding day?
- peaches...Caitlin would like to remind you that one should save the pit!
- When O-lan first asks whether she should put tea leaves in the bowl of water for Wang Lung's father, Wang Lung is embarrassed to tell her not to. What is he embarrassed about?
- Because he is too poor to afford tea leaves every day.
- What does O-lan do when she finds she does not have enough to keep her occupied with housework in Wang Lung's house?
- She begins to help him in the fields.
- What news does O-lan tell Wang Lung as they are working in the fields together?
- She is pregnant.
- O-lan declares that she will only return to the House of Hwang under what circumstances?
- dressed elaborately, carrying her child
- Wang Lund proudly decides to give O-lan four silver dollars to prepare for the birth of their first child. What is she going to do with the money?
- buy cloth to make fine clothes for herself and the baby
- What does Wang Lung do with the 50 eggs he buys after the birth of his son?
- He dyes them red.
- Where does Wang Lung take the incense he buys after the birth of his son?
- into the temple (as an offering to the gods)
- Whose badly managed and poverty-stricken household is contrasted with Wang Lung's posperous and thrifty household?
- The household of Wang Lung's uncle
- At the end of chapter 4, the book says that now when Wang Lung "walked among his fellows he walked with ease with himself and with all." What has given Wand Lung this sense of ease?
- having more money than he needs (because of his thriftiness and the good harvest)
- What is the name of the special cakes o-lan makes for New Year's?
- Moon cakes
- Why dosen't o-lan serve her special New Year's cakes to the neighbors?
- They are intended as a gift to the House of Hwang.
- What does O-lan specially notice about the House of Hwang when she visits with her baby?
- that they are not as prosperous as before
- What is the Old Mistress doing that uses up so much money, "enough everyday...to fill two shoes with gold"?
- taking opium
- What does the Old Mistress tell O-lan that she wishes to do to gain money?
- sell land
- When Wang Lung says "To those at the great house it means nothing...but to me it means how much!", what is he referring to?
- the plot of land
- What is O-lan doing when she goes into labor with her second child?
- working in the fields
- Where does Wang Lung's first son begin to sleep after the second son is born?
- with the grandfather
- Why, according to Wang Lung's uncle, has he not been able to marry off his daughters?
- He cannot afford the dowry and other fees.
- Wang Lung's uncle blames his troubles on what specific person?
- his wife
- The first time Wang Lung takes silver out from its hiding place in the wall, it is to buy land. Why does he take silver out the second time?
- to lend to his uncle
- Why does O-lan advise that the corn cobs not be burned after the harvest?
- Because she knows they can be eaten in time of hardship.
- When the hunger grows severe, what does the family have to eat, despite Wang Lung's reluctance?
- the ox
- How does the rumor get spread that Wang Lung has horded food and money when no one else has any?
- The rumor is spread by Wang Lung's resentful uncle.
- What, according to the rumor, are Wang Lung's uncle and aunt eating to keep them form starving when the famine is at its worst?
- human flesh
- When Wang Lung sees the newborn, his fourth child, it has marks on it. What do these marks suggest?
- that O-lan has strangled it, because of the famine
- What does the family do with "goodness of mercy" earth?
- They eat it.
- What does Wang Lung's uncle propose that Wang Lung should do to avoid starvation?
- sell land
- How does Wang Lung's family get the money to go south?
- They sell all their household goods.
- How does Wang Lung's father get to the train, though he is unable to walk far?
- Wang Lung carries him.
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