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The Good Earth Essay | Critical Essay #1

This Study Guide consists of approximately 40 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Good Earth.
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Critical Essay #1

Aubrey holds a Ph.D. in English and has published many articles on twentieth century literature. In this essay, he discusses the religious beliefs of the society depicted in the novel and how Wang Lung's attitude toward religion gradually changes.

In The Good Earth, Buck's saga of rural Chinese life over several generations, the three great religions of China—Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism—make almost no appearance. In Chinese history, there has generally been a distinction between the religious beliefs and practices of the educated classes and those of the peasantry. Over the centuries, the common people have known little of the intellectual or devotional practices of these great faiths. Instead, as Ninian Smart explains in The Religious Experience of Mankind, “religion, interwoven with magic, had an immediate practical significance in the struggle for worldly benefits and in the common round of agricultural and family festivals.” It is...

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This section contains 1,334 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Good Earth Study Guide
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The Good Earth from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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