Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Analysis

Literary Devices in The Call of the Wild

Symbolism, Imagery, and Allegory

Buck’s dreams of sitting by a fire with some sort of primitive form of man might represent his getting in touch with his past, his ancestry, the great tradition of existing in the harsh wilde...

Setting

The harsh brutalities of the wilderness are a key element to this story. Setting the book next to a pool in Miami might not have had the same effect on Buck’s character. It is precisely becau...

Narrator Point of View

It is interesting that London’s narrative revolves so closely around Buck and his thoughts, since Buck is a dog and not a person. Because the third person narrator goes inside Buck’s he...

Genre

There’s danger, hardship, obstacles to overcome, distance to be traveled, and unknown action at every turn – The Call of the Wild is definitely an adventure.

Tone

London’s tone is contemplative – he often steps away from plot to comment on the way Buck is learning, how Buck’s character changes, or what the call of the wild surroundings begi...

Writing Style

Reading The Call of the Wild can be a strange experience. On the one hand, Jack London gives us these scenes filled with fur, blood, and death. But, on the other hand, he gives them to us on a bed...

What’s Up With the Title?

Buck repeatedly feels this mysterious "call of the wild" – some force telling him that what he really needs to do is leave his current domestic life and hunt things down with his bare paws. A...

What’s Up With the Epigraph?

"Old longings nomadic leap, Chafing at custom's chain; Again from its brumal sleepWakens the ferine strain." The epigraph is taken from "Atavism," a poem by John Myers O’Hara. The word "Atavi...

Plot Analysis

Buck leads a calm and contented life in the "sun-kissed Santa Clara Valley."Ah, the life of leisure. Like most initial situations, this is rather boring and unexciting, and begs for Something Fun t...

Booker’s Seven Basic Plots Analysis: Quest

Buck is happy in his home in California.Such a lovely, normal universe, California. Nothing has happened…yet.In this case, a mandatory horn, as Buck is forcefully removed from his home.The ho...

Three Act Plot Analysis

Buck is stolen from his home of comfort and forced into a life of hard labor as part of a sled team traveling in the frozen North.Buck learns to adapt to his new environment, taking over as leader...

Trivia

London may or may not have committed suicide in 1916. His death was most likely the result of a morphine overdose. (Source)
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