History Literature / TheGoodEarth

26th Aug '16 7:22:53 PM Give1Take2
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* EasyEvangelicalism: Subverted. When handed a pamphlet with a picture of Jesus nailed to the cross, Wang Lung and his family marvel at it... because [[DramaticIrony they're trying to figure out what a wicked deed this man must have done to deserve such a punishment]]. They then use the flyer to line the soles of their shoes.

to:

* EasyEvangelicalism: EasyEvangelism: Subverted. When handed a pamphlet with a picture of Jesus nailed to the cross, Wang Lung and his family marvel at it... because [[DramaticIrony they're trying to figure out what a wicked deed this man must have done to deserve such a punishment]]. They then use the flyer to line the soles of their shoes.
26th Aug '16 6:28:52 PM Give1Take2
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* BrainlessBeauty: The poor fool is an almost literal case, as she's so mentally handicapped that she can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself, but her physical beauty is commented on many times. [[spoiler:This is one of the main reasons Wang Lung can't bring himself to sell her into slavery even to help his family, since her beauty ensures that she'd be sexually abused, but her lack of intelligence would leave her helpless to understand why.]]

to:

* BrainlessBeauty: The poor fool is an almost literal case, as she's so mentally handicapped that she can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself, but her physical beauty is commented on many times. [[spoiler:This is one of the main reasons Wang Lung can't bring himself to sell her into slavery even to help his family, since her beauty ensures that she'd be sexually abused, but her lack of intelligence would leave her helpless to understand why.]]besides smile.



* ChildhoodBrainDamage: The poor fool, who was born during a terrible famine and is implied to have been so malnourished as an infant that her brain never developed properly.

to:

* ChildhoodBrainDamage: The poor fool, who fool is implied to have this, as she was born during a terrible famine and is implied to have been so was malnourished as an infant that her brain never developed properly.



* DumbIsGood: An almost literal example with the poor fool, so is so mentally handicapped that all she can do is smile and play with a piece of silk all day. [[spoiler:She becomes Wang Lung's favorite child in his old age because she's too simple to give him trouble like his sons.]]
* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as eat or stand by oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.
** O-lan herself sees selling a daughter into slavery as this, since that's what her parents did to her. She even tells Wang Lung that if it were up to her, she'd sooner kill her own daughters than sell them into slavery during a famine.
* {{Foil}}: O-lan and Lotus were both sold into slavery when they were little girls, but because she was pretty Lotus was sold to a brothel (where she was pampered but sexually abused), while O-lan was made to work because she was plain (where she was regularly beaten but not sexually violated). As wives to Wang Lung, O-lan is an excellent house-keeper and child-bearer but not beautiful enough for him, while Lotus is beautiful but barren and useless. Personality-wise, Lotus is [[BeautyIsBad vain and cruel]], while O-lan is humble and hard-working.
* FoolishSiblingResponsibleSibling: Downplayed. His eldest son is more concerned with spending money than making it (though that's not to say he doesn't make any), while his second son is more concerned with both making money ''and'' saving it.

to:

* DumbIsGood: An almost literal example with the The poor fool, so fool is so mentally handicapped that all too sweet and simple to do much besides smile, and she can do is smile and play with a piece of silk all day. doesn't give Wang Lung any trouble like his other children. [[spoiler:She becomes Wang Lung's favorite child in his old age because she's too simple to give him trouble she isn't greedy or troublesome like his sons.]]
* EasyEvangelicalism: Subverted. When handed a pamphlet with a picture of Jesus nailed to the cross, Wang Lung and his family marvel at it... because [[DramaticIrony they're trying to figure out what a wicked deed this man must have done to deserve such a punishment]]. They then use the flyer to line the soles of their shoes.
* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the the poor fool" fool as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as eat or stand by oneself.this. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.
** O-lan herself sees the selling of a daughter into slavery as this, since that's what her parents did to her. She even tells Wang Lung that if it were up to her, she'd sooner kill her own daughters than sell them into slavery during a famine.
* {{Foil}}: O-lan and Lotus were both sold into slavery when they were little girls, but because she was pretty Lotus was sold to a brothel (where where she was pampered but sexually abused), abused, while O-lan was made to work because she was plain (where where she was regularly beaten but not sexually violated).violated. As wives to Wang Lung, O-lan is an excellent house-keeper and child-bearer but not beautiful enough for him, while Lotus is beautiful but barren and useless. Personality-wise, Lotus is [[BeautyIsBad vain and cruel]], while O-lan is humble and hard-working.
* FoolishSiblingResponsibleSibling: Downplayed. His eldest son is more concerned with spending money than making it (though that's not to say he doesn't make any), it, while his second son is more concerned with both making money ''and'' saving it.



* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he worries about whether he looks good in the eyes of other men, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.

to:

* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he worries about whether he looks good in the eyes of other men, or whether those in his family make makes him look bad to the neighbors.



* KickTheDog: Wang Lung's treatment of O-lan after he starts seeing Lotus; particularly when he makes her give him the two pearls she'd asked to keep (from the bag of gems she'd originally stolen that made them rich), and which she'd planned to make into earrings as a wedding gift for their youngest daughter, so he can give them to his mistress Lotus.

to:

* KickTheDog: Wang Lung's treatment of O-lan after he starts seeing Lotus; particularly when he makes her give him the two pearls she'd humbly asked to keep (from the bag of gems she'd originally stolen that made them rich), and which she'd planned to make into earrings as a wedding gift for their youngest daughter, so he can give them to his mistress Lotus.



* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Played with. Wang Lung's oldest son is a lot like him. When Wang Lung learns of his son's interest in his concubine, he finds him a wife who looks just like her. He does ''this'' by asking Lotus if she knows of anyone, and she tells him of an old client who stopped seeing her because she looked just like his young daughter. Small world, right?

to:

* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Played with. Wang Lung's oldest son is a lot like him. When him, so when Wang Lung learns of his son's interest in his concubine, concubine he finds him a wife who looks just like her. He does ''this'' by asking Lotus if she knows of anyone, and she tells him of an old client who stopped seeing her because she looked just like his young daughter. Small world, right?



* MoreDeadlyThanTheMale: While both Wang Lung's uncle and aunt extort him for money and favors after he becomes wealthy, he soon notes that his uncle usually just asks for simple pleasures, while his aunt keeps making unreasonable requests.

to:

* MoreDeadlyThanTheMale: While both Wang Lung's uncle and aunt extort him for money and favors after he becomes wealthy, he soon notes that his uncle usually just asks for simple pleasures, pleasures and then lets him be, while his aunt keeps making incessant and increasingly unreasonable requests.



** Wang Lung burying the old family retainer in the family cemetery to honor a lifetime of service, despite his sons' protests.

to:

** Wang Lung burying the old family retainer Ching in the family cemetery to honor a lifetime of service, despite his sons' protests.



* SelfMadeMan: Wang Lung. Played with in that it was really because of O-lan's prudence during their time of poverty and famine, and the bag of gems she stole from a noble's house, that allowed him to buy the land he got rich off of.

to:

* SelfMadeMan: Wang Lung. Played with in that it was really because of O-lan's prudence during their time of poverty and famine, and the bag of gems she stole from a noble's house, that allowed him to buy the land he got rich off of.



* UngratefulBastard: Wang Lung repays years of faithful love, servitude, son-bearing and child-rearing from O-lan by taking a mistress and bad-mouthing her for not being pretty enough for him. He also makes his fortune off the stash of gems she had the good sense to steal from a noble's mansion (and which he made her give him), but never gives her any nice things in return despite lavishing many jewels and presents on his concubine, Lotus.

to:

* UngratefulBastard: Wang Lung repays years of faithful love, servitude, son-bearing servitude and child-rearing from O-lan by taking a mistress concubine and bad-mouthing her for not being pretty enough for him. He also makes his fortune off the stash of gems she had the good sense to steal from a noble's mansion (and which he made her give him), but never gives her any nice things in return despite lavishing many jewels and presents on his concubine, Lotus.
21st Aug '16 3:48:53 PM Give1Take2
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* BrainlessBeauty: The poor fool is an almost literal case, as she's so mentally stunted that she can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself, but she's very pretty. [[spoiler:This is one of the main reasons Wang Lung can't bring himself to sell her into slavery, even if it means saving the rest of the family, because her beauty ensures that she'd be sexually abused, but her lack of understanding of the world would leave her helpless to understand why.]]

to:

* {{Blackmail}}: Wang Lung's uncle, aunt, and later nephew basically use their relationship to him to extort Wang Lung every chance they can get, [[DeliberateValuesDissonance threatening to tell everyone he has no]] [[SeriousBusiness filial piety]] if he doesn't.
* BrainlessBeauty: The poor fool is an almost literal case, as she's so mentally stunted handicapped that she can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself, but she's very pretty. her physical beauty is commented on many times. [[spoiler:This is one of the main reasons Wang Lung can't bring himself to sell her into slavery, slavery even if it means saving the rest of the to help his family, because since her beauty ensures that she'd be sexually abused, but her lack of understanding of the world intelligence would leave her helpless to understand why.]]



* ChildhoodBrainDamage: The poor fool, who was born during a famine and is implied to have been so malnourished as an infant that her brain never developed properly.

to:

* ChildhoodBrainDamage: The poor fool, who was born during a terrible famine and is implied to have been so malnourished as an infant that her brain never developed properly.



** Played with to some extent. Wang Lung never questions his right to take a concubine, and never thinks about the impact it has on O-lan until the day that his young daughter accidentally drops a Truth Bomb on him. The soft-hearted Wang Lung feels sorry for his daughter, who is having her feet bound, and she mentions that her mother has told her that it must be done or that she will never be loved by her future husband; "even as you do not love her". Later, after O-lan's death, Wang Lung can't bring himself to look at Lotus for a while, and he respects O-lan's wishes that Lotus should never come into her rooms or touch her things.

to:

** Played with to some extent. Wang Lung never questions his right to take a concubine, and never thinks about the impact it has on O-lan until the day that his young daughter accidentally drops a Truth Bomb on him. The soft-hearted Wang Lung feels sorry for his daughter, who is having her feet bound, and she mentions that her mother has told her that it must be done or that she will never be loved by her future husband; "even as you do not love her". Later, after O-lan's death, Wang Lung can't bring himself to look at Lotus for a while, and he respects O-lan's wishes that Lotus should never come into her rooms or touch her things. Also, when she was alive Wang Lung sometimes found himself wondering about her past, thoughts, and opinions, but then chastised himself for wondering because it was not socially meet for a man to think such things of his wife.



* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as eat or stand up by oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.

to:

* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as eat or stand up by oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.



* HiddenDepths: Wang Lung assumes O-lan is slow and stupid because she doesn't [[TheQuietOne speak]] or [[TheStoic emote]] much, and so is often surprised when she displays moments of prudence and thoughtfulness. Examples include her already having a splendid outfit planned for their first son to present to the mistress of her old house, her asking to keep two pearls which she intends to give her youngest daughter as a future wedding present, her insight into how nobles think (due to her years as a slave to a noble's house), her skill in saving money and resources during poverty and famine (which she was sold by her parents during a famine), and her rare displays of passion in regards to slavery and beautiful women (since she was made a slave and mocked all her life for not being beautiful).

to:

* HiddenDepths: Wang Lung assumes O-lan is slow and stupid because she doesn't [[TheQuietOne speak]] or [[TheStoic emote]] much, and so is often surprised when she displays moments of prudence cunning, prudence, resourcefulness, [[SimpleMindedWisdom insight]], and thoughtfulness. Examples include her already having a splendid outfit planned for their first son to present to the mistress of her old house, her asking to keep two pearls which she intends to give her youngest daughter as a future wedding present, her insight into how nobles think (due to her years as a slave to a noble's house), her skill in saving money and resources during poverty and famine (which she was sold by her parents during a famine), and her rare displays of passion in regards to slavery and beautiful women (since she was made a slave and mocked all her life for not being beautiful).[[DidYouThinkICantFeel passion]].



** Wang Lung (noticing a pattern, here?) is enraged when Lotus mistreats his youngest daughter, conveniently forgetting that he had callously taken the pearls O-lan had planned to save her as a wedding present to give to Lotus.

to:

** Wang Lung (noticing a pattern, here?) is enraged when Lotus mistreats his youngest daughter, conveniently forgetting that he had callously taken the pearls O-lan had planned to save for her as a wedding present to give to Lotus.



* MoreDeadlyThanTheMale: While both Wang Lung's uncle and aunt extort him for money and favors after he becomes wealthy, he soon notes that his uncle usually just asks for simple pleasures, while his aunt keeps making unreasonable requests.



* PerfectlyArrangedMarriage: Subverted. O-lan is indeed the perfect wife to Wang Lung, but since she is not beautiful Wang Lung can't love her.

to:

* PerfectlyArrangedMarriage: PerfectlyArrangedMarriage:
**
Subverted. O-lan is indeed the perfect wife to Wang Lung, but since she is not beautiful Wang Lung can't love her.



* PetTheDog:
** Wang Lung burying the old family retainer in the family cemetery to honor a lifetime of service, despite his sons' protests.
** When the female slave that the family gives Wang Lung's nephew (to keep him from assaulting the other girls) gives birth to a girl instead of a boy, thus they are not obligated to welcome her into the family, Wang Lung gives her a decent settlement anyway.



* TheScrooge: Trying to get Wang Lung's second son to part with money is like trying to get him to part with his fingers.



* TheScrooge: Trying to get Wang Lung's second son to part with money is like trying to get him to part with his fingers.


Added DiffLines:

** Wang Lung's nephew is no better.
* SociopathicSoldier: Wang Lung's nephew after he joins the army, as he seems to revel in a job that allows him to [[RapePillageAndBurn rape, plunder and kill]] without consequence. When quartered at Wang Lung's mansion, he even threatens to do the same to Wang Lung and his family unless he gives him his way in everything.


Added DiffLines:

* TakeAThirdOption: When Wang Lung's aunt and uncle drive the rest of the family crazy with endless extortions, his sons seriously plan to kill them and MakeItLookLikeAnAccident. When Wang Lung sees that they both become too lethargic to make demands when high on opium, he opts to have his sons give them as much as they want until [[spoiler: [[KarmicDeath they eventually die from it]].]]
20th Aug '16 2:00:22 PM Give1Take2
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* BrainlessBeauty: The poor fool is an almost literal case, as she's so mentally stunted that she can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself, but she's very pretty. [[spoiler:This is one of the main reasons Wang Lung can't bring himself to sell her into slavery, even if it means saving the rest of the family, because her beauty ensures that she'd be sexually abused, but her lack of understanding of the world would leave her helpless to understand why.]]



* ChildhoodBrainDamage: The poor fool, who was born during a famine and is implied to have been so malnourished as an infant that her brain never developed properly.



* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.

to:

* DumbIsGood: An almost literal example with the poor fool, so is so mentally handicapped that all she can do is smile and play with a piece of silk all day. [[spoiler:She becomes Wang Lung's favorite child in his old age because she's too simple to give him trouble like his sons.]]
* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that one can't so much as talk, eat, eat or stand up by oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.


Added DiffLines:

* OneOfTheKids: The poor fool with the twins when they're toddlers, despite nearly being an adolescent at the time, because developmentally she's at the same mental state as them.
20th Aug '16 1:26:51 PM Give1Take2
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* GoldDigger: Lotus refuses to agree to be Wang Lung's concubine until he's able to guarantee he can provide her the luxurious lifestyle to which she's become accustomed.

to:

* GoldDigger: Lotus refuses to agree to be Wang Lung's concubine until he's able to guarantee he can provide her the luxurious lifestyle to which she's become accustomed.



* UngratefulBastard: Wang Lung repays years of faithful love, servitude, son-bearing and child-rearing from O-lan by taking a mistress and bad-mouthing her for not being pretty enough for him. He also makes his fortune off the stash of gems she had the good sense to steal from a noble's mansion (and which he made her give him), but never gives her any nice things in return despite lavishing many jewels and presents on his mistress-turned-concubine, Lotus.

to:

* UngratefulBastard: Wang Lung repays years of faithful love, servitude, son-bearing and child-rearing from O-lan by taking a mistress and bad-mouthing her for not being pretty enough for him. He also makes his fortune off the stash of gems she had the good sense to steal from a noble's mansion (and which he made her give him), but never gives her any nice things in return despite lavishing many jewels and presents on his mistress-turned-concubine, concubine, Lotus.
20th Aug '16 1:02:43 PM Give1Take2
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* AllLoveIsUnrequited: O-lan is implied to love Wang Lung, who loves Lotus, who loves only herself. Later on, Wang Lung's third son is implied to love [[spoiler:Pear Blossom]], who prefers [[spoiler:Wang Lung]].



* ArrangedMarriage: Two.

to:

* AmbiguousSituation: It's never made clear whether [[spoiler:Wang Lung's oldest son slept with Lotus, or if they really were just talking.]]
* ArrangedMarriage: Two.Wang Lung to O-lan, Wang Lung's two eldest sons to their first wives, Wang Lung's youngest daughter to another family... makes sense, given the setting.



* BadDreams: O-lan suffers from these thanks to the never-ending beatings she received as a slave all her life.

to:

* BadDreams: O-lan suffers from these thanks to the never-ending beatings she received as a slave all her life.



* BitchInSheepsClothing: Wang Lung is surprised to hear his second son say that his oldest son's wife is secretly vain and haughty, as he thought she seemed like a perfectly nice, humble, obedient girl during the match-making process.



* DeathByDespair: It's implied that [[spoiler:Wang Lung's ailing father dies of grief for deceased O-lan.]]

to:

* DeathByDespair: It's implied that [[spoiler:Wang Lung's ailing father dies of grief for his deceased daughter-in-law, O-lan.]]]]
* DeathByIrony: O-lan has many sons like her society says she should, and is implied to [[spoiler:get uterine cancer]] as a result.



* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this. Most of them think it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that she can't talk, eat, or stand by herself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.

to:

* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this. Most of them think this, as they feel it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that she one can't so much as talk, eat, or stand by herself.oneself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.



* {{Foil}}: O-lan and Lotus were both sold into slavery by their parents when they were little girls, though because she was pretty Lotus was sold to a brothel (where she was pampered but sexually abused), while O-lan was made to work because she was plain (where she was regularly beaten but not sexually violated). As wives to Wang Lung, O-lan is an excellent house-keeper and child-bearer, but not beautiful enough for him to want to sleep with (unless he has no better options), while Lotus is beautiful and good in bed but barren and useless. Personality-wise, Lotus is [[BeautyIsBad vain and cruel]], while O-lan is humble and hard-working.

to:

* {{Foil}}: O-lan and Lotus were both sold into slavery by their parents when they were little girls, though but because she was pretty Lotus was sold to a brothel (where she was pampered but sexually abused), while O-lan was made to work because she was plain (where she was regularly beaten but not sexually violated). As wives to Wang Lung, O-lan is an excellent house-keeper and child-bearer, child-bearer but not beautiful enough for him to want to sleep with (unless he has no better options), him, while Lotus is beautiful and good in bed but barren and useless. Personality-wise, Lotus is [[BeautyIsBad vain and cruel]], while O-lan is humble and hard-working.



* FromTheMouthsOfBabes: Wang Lung tells his youngest daughter she shouldn't get her feet bound if it hurts her so much, to which she innocently replies that her mother told her she needs to have her feet bound or else her future husband won't love her "the way your father doesn't love me." That's how he found out she knew he didn't love her.

to:

* FromTheMouthsOfBabes: Wang Lung tells his youngest daughter she shouldn't get her feet bound if it hurts her so much, to which she innocently replies that her mother told her she needs to have her feet bound or else her future husband won't love her "the way your father doesn't love me." That's how he found out she knew he didn't love her."



* HiddenDepths: Wang Lung assumes O-lan is slow and stupid because she doesn't [[TheQuietOne speak]] or [[TheStoic emote]] much, and so is often surprised when she displays moments of prudence and thoughtfulness. Examples include her already having a splendid outfit planned for their first son to present to the mistress of her old house, her asking to keep two pearls which she intends to give her youngest daughter as a future wedding present, her insight into how nobles think (due to her years as a slave to a noble's house), her skill in saving money and resources during poverty and famine (which she was sold by her parents during a famine), and her rare displays of passion in regards to slavery and beautiful women (since she was made a slave and mocked all her life for not being beautiful).



* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does worries about whether he looks good in the eyes of other men, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.

to:

* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he worries about whether he looks good in the eyes of other men, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.



* KickTheDog: Wang Lung's treatment of O-lan after he starts seeing Lotus, particularly when he makes her give him the two pearls she'd asked to keep (from the bag of gems she'd originally stolen that made them rich), and which she'd planned to make into earrings as a wedding gift for their youngest daughter, so he can give them to his mistress Lotus as a present.

to:

* KickTheDog: Wang Lung's treatment of O-lan after he starts seeing Lotus, Lotus; particularly when he makes her give him the two pearls she'd asked to keep (from the bag of gems she'd originally stolen that made them rich), and which she'd planned to make into earrings as a wedding gift for their youngest daughter, so he can give them to his mistress Lotus.
*
Lotus as a present.has an almost literal case when she strikes the poor fool for trying to touch her.



* SelfMadeMan: Wang Lung.

to:

* SelfMadeMan: Wang Lung. Played with in that it was really because of O-lan's prudence during their time of poverty and famine, and the bag of gems she stole from a noble's house, that allowed him to buy the land he got rich off of.




to:

* WhyCouldntYouBeDifferent: Although he's her husband rather than her father, Wang Lung gives a very cruel variant of this to O-lan at one point after he starts seeing Lotus, angrily demanding why she isn't prettier or why her feet are unbound; all things she can't do anything about.
19th Aug '16 7:39:25 PM Give1Take2
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* ChristmasCake: Wang Lung feels lucky to have landed such a beautiful concubine until his relatives laugh that her looks are starting to fade, and thus it's obvious she only agreed to be his because her days at the brothel are numbered.
* DeathByDespair: It's implied that [[spoiler:Wang Lung's ailing father dies sooner than expected out of grief for his recently deceased daughter-in-law, O-lan. He often cries out for her while sick, and when told she's dead he can't stop wailing with grief until his own death soon after.]]

to:

* ChristmasCake: Wang Lung feels lucky to have landed such a beautiful concubine until his relatives laugh that her Lotus' looks are starting to fade, and thus it's obvious she only agreed to be his because her days at the brothel are numbered.
* ChildHater: Lotus is implied to be this, since she's disgusted when Wang Lung's children come near her.
*
DeathByDespair: It's implied that [[spoiler:Wang Lung's ailing father dies sooner than expected out of grief for his recently deceased daughter-in-law, O-lan. He often cries out for her while sick, and when told she's dead he can't stop wailing with grief until his own death soon after.O-lan.]]



* FoolishSiblingResponsibleSibling: Downplayed. His eldest son is more concerned with spending money than making it (though that's not to say he doesn't make any), while his second son is more concerned with both making money and saving it.

to:

* {{Foil}}: O-lan and Lotus were both sold into slavery by their parents when they were little girls, though because she was pretty Lotus was sold to a brothel (where she was pampered but sexually abused), while O-lan was made to work because she was plain (where she was regularly beaten but not sexually violated). As wives to Wang Lung, O-lan is an excellent house-keeper and child-bearer, but not beautiful enough for him to want to sleep with (unless he has no better options), while Lotus is beautiful and good in bed but barren and useless. Personality-wise, Lotus is [[BeautyIsBad vain and cruel]], while O-lan is humble and hard-working.
* FoolishSiblingResponsibleSibling: Downplayed. His eldest son is more concerned with spending money than making it (though that's not to say he doesn't make any), while his second son is more concerned with both making money and ''and'' saving it.



* GenerationalSaga
* GoldDigger: Lotus refuses to agree to be Wang Lung's concubine until he's able to guarantee he can provide her a luxurious lifestyle.

to:

* GenerationalSaga
GenerationalSaga: Wang Lung and his descendants.
* GoldDigger: Lotus refuses to agree to be Wang Lung's concubine until he's able to guarantee he can provide her a the luxurious lifestyle.lifestyle to which she's become accustomed.



** Lotus is jealous when Wang Lung takes [[spoiler:Pear Blossom]] as a mistress, despite starting off as Wang Lung's mistress to O-lan.

to:

** Wang Lung is unhappy to learn that his daughter-in-law wants to have a wet nurse in order to keep her breasts nice and pert, [[NostalgiaFilter fondly reminiscing the days when O-lan nursed their children.]] He conveniently forgets that this caused her breasts to sag as she got older, which he threw in her face when he left her bed for Lotus's.
** Wang Lung (noticing a pattern, here?) is enraged when Lotus mistreats his youngest daughter, conveniently forgetting that he had callously taken the pearls O-lan had planned to save her as a wedding present to give to Lotus.
** Lotus herself is jealous when Wang Lung takes [[spoiler:Pear Blossom]] as a mistress, despite starting off as Wang Lung's mistress to O-lan.



* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he thinks about whether he looks good in other men's eyes, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.

to:

* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he thinks worries about whether he looks good in the eyes of other men's eyes, men, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.



* LikeFatherLikeSon: Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him the most. [[YourCheatingHeart Not that this is]] [[{{Jerkass}} a good thing.]]
* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Played with. Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him, and when he learns of his son's interest in his mistress he finds his son a wife who looks just like her. He does ''this'' by asking Lotus if she knows of anyone, and she tells him of an old client who stopped seeing her because she looked just like his young daughter. Small world, right?

to:

* LikeFatherLikeSon: Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him the most. [[YourCheatingHeart Not that this is]] [[{{Jerkass}} a good thing.]]
most.
* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Played with. Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him, and when he is a lot like him. When Wang Lung learns of his son's interest in his mistress concubine, he finds his son him a wife who looks just like her. He does ''this'' by asking Lotus if she knows of anyone, and she tells him of an old client who stopped seeing her because she looked just like his young daughter. Small world, right?


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* TheScrooge: Trying to get Wang Lung's second son to part with money is like trying to get him to part with his fingers.


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* UndyingLoyalty: O-Lan to Wang Lung. Not that he appreciates it.
19th Aug '16 6:40:58 PM Give1Take2
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* ArrangedMarriage: Two

to:

* AlphaBitch: Lotus.
* ArrangedMarriage: TwoTwo.



* BadDreams: O-lan suffers from these thanks to the never-ending beatings she received as a slave all her life.



** Downplayed by his second son, who wants a wife who's pretty but not TOO pretty, as he doesn't want a wife who's vain or selfish.
* ChristmasCake: Wang Lung feels lucky to have landed such a beautiful concubine until his relatives laugh that her looks are starting to fade, and thus it's obvious she only agreed to be his because her days at the brothel are numbered.
* DeathByDespair: It's implied that [[spoiler:Wang Lung's ailing father dies sooner than expected out of grief for his recently deceased daughter-in-law, O-lan. He often cries out for her while sick, and when told she's dead he can't stop wailing with grief until his own death soon after.]]



* DullEyesOfUnhappiness: Wang Lung notices that O-lan has a smile that never reaches her eyes.
* AFateWorseThanDeath: Most characters see "the poor fool" as this. Most of them think it would be better to be dead than so mentally stunted that she can't talk, eat, or stand by herself. Only Wang Lung, O-lan, and Pear Blossom can stand to be near her.
** O-lan herself sees selling a daughter into slavery as this, since that's what her parents did to her. She even tells Wang Lung that if it were up to her, she'd sooner kill her own daughters than sell them into slavery during a famine.
* FoolishSiblingResponsibleSibling: Downplayed. His eldest son is more concerned with spending money than making it (though that's not to say he doesn't make any), while his second son is more concerned with both making money and saving it.
* FromTheMouthsOfBabes: Wang Lung tells his youngest daughter she shouldn't get her feet bound if it hurts her so much, to which she innocently replies that her mother told her she needs to have her feet bound or else her future husband won't love her "the way your father doesn't love me." That's how he found out she knew he didn't love her.



* GoldDigger: Lotus refuses to agree to be Wang Lung's concubine until he's able to guarantee he can provide her a luxurious lifestyle.



* HopelessSuitor: Wang Lung's third son is implied to be this for [[spoiler:Pear Blossom]], who can't love him back [[spoiler:and is interested in his father]] because she doesn't like young men.
* {{Hypocrite}}:
** Wang Lung doesn't like women with unbound feet, but objects to O-lan binding their daughter's feet even though failing to do so would make her unattractive in her own future husband's eyes. O-lan [[FromTheMouthsOfBabes indirectly]] calls him out on this.
** Lotus is jealous when Wang Lung takes [[spoiler:Pear Blossom]] as a mistress, despite starting off as Wang Lung's mistress to O-lan.



* ImpoverishedPatrician: The House of Hwang, which is forced to sell most of their properties to Wang Lung

to:

* ImpoverishedPatrician: The House of Hwang, which is forced to sell most of their properties to Wang LungLung.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Wang Lung rarely thinks of anyone but himself. The few times he does he thinks about whether he looks good in other men's eyes, or whether those in his family make him look bad to the neighbors.



* KickTheDog: Wang Lung's treatment of O-lan after he starts seeing Lotus, particularly when he makes her give him the two pearls she'd asked to keep (from the bag of gems she'd originally stolen that made them rich), and which she'd planned to make into earrings as a wedding gift for their youngest daughter, so he can give them to his mistress Lotus as a present.
* LikeFatherLikeSon: Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him the most. [[YourCheatingHeart Not that this is]] [[{{Jerkass}} a good thing.]]
* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Played with. Wang Lung's oldest son takes after him, and when he learns of his son's interest in his mistress he finds his son a wife who looks just like her. He does ''this'' by asking Lotus if she knows of anyone, and she tells him of an old client who stopped seeing her because she looked just like his young daughter. Small world, right?



* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Wang Lung doesn't realize how cruel and unfair he's been to O-lan all these years [[spoiler:until she's on her deathbed]], but by then it's far too late to make it up to her.



* PapaWolf: Wang Lung has ONE moment in his life, when his children sneak into Lotus' room to get a look at her, and she screams and tries to strike them. Wang Lung is PISSED, and tells her off for it.
* ParentalFavoritism: Wang Lung openly favors his eldest son, since he's a first-born son who takes after him. His second son doesn't mind since he knows how to manipulate his dad into giving him what he wants anyway, but his third son does mind. [[DeliberateValuesDissonance It goes without saying that he favors his sons over his daughters.]]



** {{Invoked}} by his second son for himself. After Wang Lung finds his eldest son a beautiful wife, he assumes his second son will want the same. The kid replies that he actually wants a girl who's sensible, pretty but not so pretty as to be vain, and from a decent family but not so good a family that she's be haughty or arrogant. Confused, Wang Lung carries out his requests, and from all appearances his second son's marriage is more stable than any other man's in the family.



* RagsToRiches

to:

* RagsToRichesRagsToRiches: Wang Lung and his family.
* ScrewThisImOuttaHere: Wang Lung's third son, after he finds out about [[spoiler:his dad's relationship with Pear Blossom]], whom the book implies he was in love with.


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* SiblingYinYang: His two eldest sons. His eldest son is lusty, passionate, and a notorious spendthrift, while his second son is shrewd, calculating, and a huge miser.


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* SweetTooth: Lotus, as she ages.


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* TheUnfavorite: Wang Lung's third son, whom he never even thinks about unless someone asks, "How many sons do you have?"
* UngratefulBastard: Wang Lung repays years of faithful love, servitude, son-bearing and child-rearing from O-lan by taking a mistress and bad-mouthing her for not being pretty enough for him. He also makes his fortune off the stash of gems she had the good sense to steal from a noble's mansion (and which he made her give him), but never gives her any nice things in return despite lavishing many jewels and presents on his mistress-turned-concubine, Lotus.
20th Mar '16 10:18:15 PM gallium
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Added DiffLines:

[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/luise_rainer_07_the_good_earth.jpg]]
20th Mar '16 8:26:13 PM gallium
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Added DiffLines:

* BookEnds: The movie begins with Wang Lung's wedding and ends with his son's wedding.


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* TheSwarm: The big climax has Wang Lung and the villagers setting fires in an attempt to ward off a horde of locusts that threaten to eat their entire harvest.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Literature.TheGoodEarth