"The Call of the Wild" by Jack London

Essay by wolfgirl0911Junior High, 7th gradeB+, March 2007

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Jack London’s classic adventure story about a dog trying to find his true destiny is widely considered to be his masterpiece. Set mostly in the Yukon during the time of the Gold Rush, in the late 19th century, The Call of the Wild is a heartfelt survival story.

The Call of the Wild tells the story of a dog named Buck. He is stolen from his home in the Santa Clara Valley of California, and taken to the Yukon gold fields to be a sled dog. This story tells the life of Buck as he is passed from owner to owner. Buck’s first captor starves him, then he is beaten to teach him obedience upon arrival to his next owner. After that he is sold again to a hard working supply team and then sold yet again to an abusive family. He is eventually rescued by a kind master, John Thornton, whom he cares for deeply.

After Thornton is killed, Buck realizes his true calling is the wild and he is accepted as the leader of a pack of wild wolves.

Buck is the main character of the story. He is a massive dog, half Saint Bernard and half Scotch shepherd. In the beginning of the story, Buck is a laid back companion and a very friendly being, but as the story progresses, circumstances, such as abuse and hunger, forced him to become more outgoing, self reliant and careful.

Buck is a wonderful metaphor for human growth and development. Even though Buck is forced into doing things he doesn’t want to do, he holds his head up high and becomes a better animal by doing so. Another important point London makes in this novel is ‘survival of the fittest’ which is a theory that claims that only the fittest...