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What do you like about London's Writing Style?

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medha sharma

on 23 May 2014

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Transcript of What do you like about London's Writing Style?

What do you like about London's writing style?
Descriptions/ Foreshadowing

o Used descriptions to foreshadow
o Include appearance, figurative language, actions, imagery
o Relate to symbolism, conflict, characterization
o Pg. 7 - man in red sweater; symbolized danger
o Pg. 11 - Curly was good-natured; died in next chapter
o Pg. 17 - Sol-leks had a battled-scarred face; slashed Buck

Why is relating descriptions/imagery to symbolism, conflict and characterization IMPORTANT in the story?
o Symbolism: to deliver a bigger message to the readers rather than having them know the surface idea like what events happened; instead, use symbolism to show how it affect Buck and to have a better understanding
o Conflict: to take advantage of descriptions and imagery of the setting or any other literary elements to foreshadow a conflict/complication that could approach Buck
o Characterization: imagery could reveal characters’ appearance, traits and actions; important because it reveal how it could affect the internal Buck or his identity that Buck himself isn’t aware of; could make complications
Summary (of previous slides; main idea)

London uses a lot of descriptions such as imagery and characterization to do not only foreshadow, but to further Buck's complications throughout the story.

Typically, the time, place, and even the general environment of a book are the elements to create the setting. Several things should be considered: Where and when the event took place, how does the weather or nature contribute, how does the setting create the mood of the story, how the setting affect the characters. All of these should allow someone to develop a thesis.
For example, during the story, this took place during the Klondike Gold Rush. This setting contributes to the plot of the book by saying why the people need dogs, and the weather on the way there when Buck was kidnapped. The dogs have to adapt how to sleep under snow, and have to adapt, because the lack of food, to eat a certain ration a day. Also, the reason why people needed dogs was because of the Klondike Gold Rush, there was a high demand in dogs.
Jack London’s writing style has astounded me as a reader in many ways. I love reading books, it is a hobby I have that allowed me to understand some aspects of life, and London has taught me a different thing through his work, The Call of the Wild. His ability to show the ambitions of man in a dog’s form is incredible. He secretly leads the reader into a mystery, giving hints once in a while to show the beastly nature of humanity: the want of power, the respect to those in authority, adapting to a different environment. However, Buck doesn’t just tell the reader if he’s scared, angry, or triumphant. Symbolism leads the reader to the secrets within humanity. There is a part when Buck is clubbed. He doesn’t understand why the man keeps doing that to him, so he won’t give up until he is knocked unconscious. Starting from that pivotal point, Buck realizes that men with clubs wanted respect. The club symbolized control and the harsh force of Nature (10).
There are two other examples:
 Quote: “As Francois’s whip backed him up, Buck found it to be cheaper to mend his ways than to retaliate… whip snapped less frequently, and Perrault even honored Buck by lifting up his feet and carefully examining them.” (20). The whip symbolizes the discipline in order to survive in the Klondlike Gold Rush. Buck needs to learn to control his desires in order to live and support the pack, no matter how many selfish ambitions lead him elsewhere. The softness he obtained from his former life will hurt him in the long run if he doesn’t get a few hits from life. Without experiences in life, how will you become wise? That is logic.
 Quote: “Buck’s feet were not so compact and hard as the feet of the huskies. His had softened during the many generations since the day his last wild ancestor was tamed by a cavedweller or river man…sacrificed the tops of his own moccasins to make four moccasins for Buck.” (31). This symbolizes the adaptation of Buck from sun-kissed mansion to Buck of the Klondlike. The moccasins gradually become disgusting and like sandpaper from constant use against the cold ground, and soon, Buck can use his own four feet to travel around. In the same way, Buck takes baby steps toward getting used to this harsh life he leads, and can fit in in the end.

I like how Jack London uses a lot of descriptive writing such as imagery in his writing to present his idea. His imagery makes the writing clearer and easier to understand. You are able to deeply enjoy the story. He uses very precise words that allow you to “feel” rather than read the text.
Example: “It stood back from the road, half hidden among the trees, through which glimpses could be caught of the wide cool veranda that ran around its four sides.” From this little excerpt, London explains the environment around him. Words like “half hidden and wide cool veranda” tell the reader what kind of environment the setting is in.
Example: “There was no warning, only a leaping like a flash, a metallic clip of teeth, a leap out equally swift and Curly’s fact was ripped open from eye to jaw.” This excerpt shows us the brutality of Curly’s death. The details inform us about the quick manner in which Curly’s death took place and how unimportant Curly was to the huskies that were attacking her. They didn’t even bother to take a lot of time to kill her because they care so less about Curly.
Example: “Buck staggered over against the sled, exhausted, sobbing for breath, helpless.” This excerpt explains about how Buck is exhausted and that he can’t bear to stand up. The reader is also able to tell that Buck is really exerted because otherwise, because of Buck’s pride, he would not allow other dogs to see him in such a miserable state.
In the end, London’s use of imagery in his writing has a big impact because of what readers are able to infer from it and the feeling it provides to readers.

Characterization and Unbiased Opinion
By: Gloria Chang, Mindy Dang,William Hwang, Erika Tam, and Medha Sharma
I like the way Jack London writes without being biased. He shows both the good and bad of each character. For example, even though Buck is the main character of The Call of the Wild, London shows how he can become a beast possessed with rage in chapter three. Another example would be the character Spitz. Even though Spitz is first shown to be a completely negative character, London later shows that one of his good qualities is that while fighting, he is able to use his opponent’s blind rage to his advantage. I like that London is able to give readers a choice to like which characters they want to unlike most authors, who usually make you feel sympathetic toward one character.
Example: “Buck staggered over against the sled, exhausted, sobbing for breath, helpless. This was Spitz’s opportunity. He sprang upon Buck, and twice his teeth sank into his unresisting foe and ripped and tore the flesh to the bone.” This excerpt from chapter three includes characterization showing that Spitz is merciless and coldhearted when it comes to defeating his foes.
Jack London uses a great deal of characterization in his writing in order to further develop the plot in The Call of the Wild.
Example: “But Francois, chuckling at the incident while unswerving in the administration of justice, brought down his lash down upon Buck with all his might.” London characterizes Francois in this sentence by showing that while he seems to enjoy Buck’s little antics; he must abide to his rule of justice.
In the end, London does an excellent job characterizing all the characters in The Call of the Wild throughout the whole book.
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