The Good Earth

In chapter 21, what is Wang Lung 's no-win situation?

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Throughout the previous chapters, Wang Lung demonstrated an intense sensitivity to the opinions of others, but now that he is idle and wealthy, his focus turns inward. He is no longer happy with the mere ownership of money; now he wishes to behave and look like a rich man. O-lan compares him to the dissolute and extravagant Old Master Hwang.