Call of the Wild Suggested Essays

Suggested Essay Questions

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  1. 1

    Anthropomorphism is one of the primary literary techniques used by Jack London in The Call of the Wild. How was London able to use this technique to express his ideas about human as well as canine nature?

  2. 2

    Explain how the beginning of The Call of the Wild illustrates the idea of "survival of the fittest". Use examples from the text to justify your answer.

  3. 3

    How does Buck feel about the man in the red sweater? Is he supposed to be a negative character? Defend your answer with examples from the book.

  4. 4

    Mercedes, the only female character in The Call of the Wild, is weak, unlikable and selfish. Is London necessarily suggesting that women had no place in the Klondike, or is Mercedes gender irrelevant to her flaws?

  5. 5

    At the end of the novel, do you believe that every dog would be happier living free in the wild? Defend your answer with examples from the story.

  6. 6

    London suggests that people, like dogs, have wilder natures that are tempered by civilization. Does London also suggest in The Call of the Wild that people who are able to give in to their wilder instincts are happier and nobler than those who are not? Make sure to consider people in the Klondike as well as those in Buck's original home.

  7. 7

    Why does Buck dream of ancient man? What could that relationship offer him that is missing from his other relationships with men?

  8. 8

    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?

  9. 9

    Why does Dave beg to remain at the traces, even though it will kill him? Would Buck have made the same decision?

  10. 10

    What is the call of the wild? Explain how Buck slowly came to understand this call.