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Transcript of Batard
By: Jack London
Jack London was born in 1876 in San Francisco, California. As he was growing up, he
decided school wasn’t for him, so at 14 years old, he gave up school and took a series of “jobs.”
In 1897, Jack decided to go take part in the Klondike Gold Rush in northwestern Canada. While failing at mining, London gained several fiction ideas that would later serve as his short stories. When he returned to Oakland, he began his long, successful career as an author. Most of Jack’s stories are based around his life and experience at the Klondike. The story To Build a Fire, was published in 1908. London became a millionaire after his output, which varies form short stories, to novels, to plays.
Batard is a dog in the short story "Batard." Batard was bought by Black Leclere to keep with him in his expeditions, whether it is very hot or very cold. He is a very vicious dog also. In the first few days that Black bought him, Batard decided to bite Black. Since the two are virtually inseparable, Leclere doesn’t want to shoot Batard for his actions. Batard is a very lovable dog, except for the fact that he bites people very commonly.
Black is a very well-mannered fellow. He has a love for dogs, which is why he is very patient with Batard. Even though Batard bites him twice, Black has the patience to not kill Batard, even though he gets the temptation to. Leclere is very well respectable and would make a very good friend.
Black Leclere was a very smart man. He found a dog one day, and he helped it out of the snow in the freezing conditions. While the kind man was helping the mindless dog, Batard, the dog, decided to bite Leclere on the hand. Somewhere amidst the chaos, Black Leclere saw something in the dog that he really liked. Black decided to buy the dog and name it Batard. After the purchase, they two soon-to-be companions started their journey from St. Michael’s to the Yukon Delta. During the trip, when the two would fight each other, Batard would relentlessly try to bite Black and jump on him. Triggered by the mission, Black would get furious at Batard. Finally, Black decided that was enough and told the husky-like dog that he would shoot him. So, because of his threat, Batard runs away from Black. During Batard’s escape, two other guys spot him. Charley, one of the witnesses of Batard, decides to shoot him, but his trigger finger is too cold to even pull the trigger back. Because of his want to kill him, he hands the gun to Shaw, the other man, to fire it. Is Batard killed or is Shaw’s trigger finger also frozen? Read to find out!
Why are some human and animal friendships so important and durable?
Why would someone be such great friends with someone who hurts them everyday?
Why would the two characters that saw Batard later want to shoot the dog?
Slickwater Charley – He appears at the end of the story and tries to shoot Batard, but can't because he is too cold, so he hands the revolver to Webster Shaw.
Webster Shaw – He is with Black and Batard throughout the story and at the end shoots Batard and disables him.
Point Of View