Call of the Wild

Call of the Wild by Jack London – Study Guide Questions

When the dogs are in John Thornton's camp, why do the dogs besides Buck give in to Hal's whipping

and pull the sled? (One paragraph)

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One might speculate as to why the other dogs continue to go. On the one hand, they are followers rather than leaders. On the other hand, Buck has knowledge that the others do not. He has lived among so-called civilized people. His instinct has made him wise in the ways of dogs, but his experience has made him wise in the ways of people. The other dogs know no life but the traces, or they have too much fear of the club. John sees Buck and understands his silent revolt. He saves him, because he recognizes his value. John knows the kind of loyalty and power necessary to survival in this kind of world. When the sled team goes down, the reader may or may not experience pleasure at the death of Hal, Mercedes and Charles, but the death of the dogs is poignant, even heart-breaking. Even more so than the single deaths thus far, this scene drives home the consequences of attempting to live in this world of club and fang.