Wang Lung’s father is quite old. He trusts Wang Lung to take care of him, and Wang Lung feels a strong familial duty to do so. He generally does little more than sit in the sun and nap, but he always maintains a very optimistic view of life, and is known to bring laughter to some of the grimmest situations. Symbolically, he acts as an advocate for the old way of life, before Wang Lung became wealthy, disapproving of anything he perceives as luxurious and scolding his son for purchasing a second woman, Lotus. He eventually dies, and Wang Lung buries him along with O-lan in the first graves in the family burial plot.
The timeline below shows where the character Wang Lung’s father appears in The Good Earth. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
...and rice. They’ve eaten so little lately that they have trouble eating now. Wang Lung’s father cheerfully forces the bread down, making the people around him laugh with his determination to... (full context)
...Finally he returns with the mats. He sees that the boys are frightened, but his father is amazed at the southerners’ health. Caravans pass carrying bricks and grain, and the drivers... (full context)