What is the setting of The Good Earth?

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The Good Earth was written by American author Pearl S. Buck and was published in 1931. Buck was the wife of a Christian missionary and, by the time of the book’s publication, had been living in China for around forty years.

The first half of the novel is set on Wang Lung’s family farm. Although the exact setting is not named, it is believed that the farm is located in Anhwei, rural China. The area is a poor one.

The setting for the second half of the novel is also not named, but it is believed that the large city in southern China is Nanking. The family move there when a drought drives them into debt. The city is located on the opposite side of the Yangtze River from Anhwei. The family stays in Nanking until the revolution—it is then that they return to Anhwei.

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The first part of the novel is set in Anhwei, a little farming village in east central China divided by the Yangtze River. Most of the people who live there are peasants. The second half of the novel is set in Kiangsu, a city in the south of China. Wang Lung takes his family here after they experience a famine in Anhwei. Kiangsu is a big city that's overcrowded. It has many places of entertainment and offers a whole different world to Wang Lung. Wang Lung stays here until revolution breaks out, and then he goes back to his village.

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