– Why is that some parents choose not to show their child that they love them? – Expressing love?
Throughout the entire book of The Good Earth, you have two parents who decide that it is not essential to show their children that they love them. The only affection that they though was crucial to express, what their love for their two boys. That maybe just because of their culture, but when you obviously love the children like Wang Lung does, why not express it?
For the duration of the book, there are the little gestures that Wang Lung does that proves that he “cares” about his children, but at the same you have this who acts like he has no feelings at all. Of course we all read about the hardships that is repetitively coming upon the family, but Wang Lungs actions are all in the mind-set of saving his family. That is always his first priority. That is Wang Lung’s act of love, but him being the way he is. It is always to say the way he feels about his children every once in a while.
There is a part in the book, where O-lan decides to end the life of her fourth child, and had to be the most infuriating moment for me. I assume she did it out of the kindness of her heart, but really it was an act that was extremely heartless. Yes, I understand that at the time the child was most likely going to die of starvation, but she did not even give the poor child a chance. Life is a precious thing and she took that away from her. Then there is Wang Lung who noticeably sees the strangle wounds around his now dead baby’s neck, but doesn’t say a word. He has emotions towards the child, despite his superstition, but still decides to hide them away.
Being from Chinese culture at the time where the book was based upon, was not an easy time, family wise. In most Asian cultures, the boy is always seen as the superior. The receive all the parents attention, meanwhile, the female is just there. As for the children in The Good Earth, it is apparent that the boys receive “special treatment” from their parents because they are the heir to their title. There is a scene from the book, where Wang Lung and O-Lan are debating whether or no to sell their first female child into slavery, but they decide not to because they love the so called child that they call slave.
What I am trying to express in this blog post is that it is important for parents to verbally tell their child that love them . You may show them the act of your love for them, but unless it is told they will never know. Other wise, one could end up exactly like Wang Lung’s father and Wang Lung at the beginning of the book. Because of the grandfather not telling or expressing his love towards Wang Lung, he has chosen to do that with his kids also, and it takes him an extensive amount of time to do so. As a parent you are obliged to love your children, but you don’t have to ever tell them so, which is a shame.