Pearl S. Buck: Biography

Pearl S. Buck

26 jun 1892

Pearl Sydenstricker Buck was highly regarded as the first American woman to win the Nobel Prize for Literature. Throughout her life she did wonderful deeds for society. Apart from the classical novels that she has written, Pearl also wrote two memoirs and biographies of her parents.

Born as a daughter to Christian missionaries in Hillsboro, West Virginia on Jun 26, 1892, Pearl’s initial years were in China. Pearl entered China as a five month old baby and by the age of 4, she excelled in English and Chinese. The Chinese amah who raised Pearl told her many stories and myths. It is her life and experience in China that made Pearl a great writer.

Pearl did her graduation in America but again returned to China in the mid 1910s. She started working as a University instructor and simultaneously started writing novel about China. The civil unrest in China that exploded in 1934, forced Pearl to move back to United States.

Meanwhile Pearl took to writing full time, since she required money to spend to her mentally retarded daughter. Her first novel, ‘East Wind, West Wind’ was published in 1930. Women’s right was a major cause for which Pearl worked very hard. She supported civil and women rights and established Welcome House, the first international, interracial adoption agency. She herself adopted many children.

Pearl was a bestselling author. Her classic novel, ‘The Good Earth’ was awarded a Pulitzer Prize and William Dean Howells Medal. Few of her novels like, ‘The Good Earth’ and ‘Dragon Seed’ succeeded as a movie also.

A great writer Pearl S. Buck, who contributed in all her ways to the society, died of lung cancer in Vermont on Mar 6, 1973.