What is the most significant line of Chapter 24 in The Good Earth and why is it significant?

Expert Answers
teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This is certainly subjective, and readers will argue for the significance of multiple quotations depending on the interpretive reading that they have given the chapter.  That said, in my reading, the most significant quotation is a line of O-lan's dialogue in which she says, '"I have something to say."'  Throughout the novel, O-lan has said little, and she rarely asserts agency over anything that happens in the home.  Wang Lung does not usually respect O-lan's thoughts on matters, so she has remained largely silent.  However, in this chapter, she boldly goes to Wang Lung and tells him that she has something to say.  He is surprised by O-lan's words and actions, but he tells her to go on and say what she has to say.  O-lan reveals the affair between the eldest son and Lotus which Wang Lung seemingly is unaware.  O-lan in her silence is completely tuned into the inner turmoil of the home, and she knows that evil has befallen the family.  This is why her line is significant in this chapter.