The Good Earth by Pearl Buck

The Good Earth by Pearl Buck

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The Good Earth Essay

     The Good Earth by Pearl Buck provides an excellent form of archetypal structure. It shows how nature is clean and pure, while the mechanistic world is corrupt and evil. There are many ways that it can be proven, yet only three are really stressed throughout the novel. The three stressed throughout the novel the entire time are, nature providing, money corrupting, and how the law of the land is the only right way. That was why, in The Good Earth, the archetypal structure, nature versus the mechanistic world was portrayed throughout the entire novel.

     Basically, the entire story told the reader that nature is always providing. A way that nature provided for Wang Lung was, "And in the field the wheat seed sprouted and pushed delicate spears of wet green above the delicate brown Earth" (pg, 43). Wang Lung got his fields this way by plowing and farming for many years. By doing this, Wang Lung did his part so nature helped him out. Wang Lung had told a man, not of his superiority, "É Good harvest means good seasons" (pg, 47). This showed how well acquainted Wang Lung was with his land. He was so in-tune with nature that he could tell if it was going to be a good year or not. Thus, throughout the entire novel, nature always provided for Wang Lung and his family.

     Another archetypal structure used in the novel was showing how money corrupts. A statement made in the novel concerning this was, "ÉAnd everyone knew now that Wang Lung owned this land, and in his village there was talk of making him head" (pg, 58). This statement was said around the time that Wang Lung started realizing how powerful he was. So after hearing this, Wang Lung got big headed, causing the money to make him corrupted. One line said in the book really sums up how money corrupts, "And am I always to look like a hind when we have enough to spare?" (pg, 186). This occurred when they were living in the Great House and everyone was spoiled. It seems hard to believe that a family brought up from nothing, to have everything, would be so spoiled and ungrateful for all they have. Even in todayÕs world money corrupts, but Pearl Buck does a good job of showing it in The Good Earth.

     One of the other ways for stressing archetypal structure is stating that the law of the land is the only way.

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A statement made on page twenty-nine states it well, "There was only this perfect movement, of turning this Earth of theirs over and over to the sun, this Earth which formed their home and fed their bodies and made their Gods." This is an extraordinarily way of telling you how they lived. There was no way to express how they felt about the land THEY owned. The final quote that sums up the entire novel, and explains everything is, "All their lives depended on the Earth" (pg, 68). There was no better saying in the entire book than that. That quote explains everything in a nutshell. For all of these quotes, they do a perfect job of telling how the law of the land is the only way.

     The Good Earth is always doing a good job of showing the archetypal structure, nature versus the mechanistic world throughout the entire novel. It shows how a person canÕt depend on money for everything. Had there not been money involved in the novel, then there wouldnÕt have been any type of story. Hopefully, by showing money being corruptful, nature providing, and the law of the land, the reader can be put into a different mindset about such things. ItÕs clear now why The Good Earth won so many awards.

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