- The author writes of the main character, “The trouble with him was that he was without imagination.” Why would it be important to have imagination living and traveling in a harsh climate? What other characteristics or qualities does the man have? How are these demonstrated?
– When you are travelling in an unexpected environment that is not like your everyday places, you need to be able to be creative. You could need to come up with solutions to any unexpected or unexplained situation that may occur. You would need to make sure you can make up things in your head because you are unaware of what might occur. If you lack imagination, you are more likely to only choose ways of doing everyday ways you have knowledge on rather than being creative and exploring. In this story case, the man doesn’t have much imagination as he travels and it effects his way of survival. He is only choosing to do certain things the way he knows and not by creativity. With imagination you can have a sense of when the weather could be changing from cold to even harsher, extreme weather. A sense of survival is also another important quality to have in this type of climate because if you don;t have any type of survival skills, you will have a hard time adapting to a different environment. In this book, the man doesn’t have any imagination which is hindering his ability to have some survival skills. He attempts to make fire for warmth but many of the times this fails, such as when the tree drops snow on the fire causing it to go out.
- When did you first suspect that the man was going to die? How is his death foreshadowed?
– There were multiple foreshadows in the book that showed the man was probably going to die but the very first foreshadow that made me realize was when the author said the land was described to have an “intangible pall over the face of things.” An intangible pall was the untouchable or unreal feeling of death. That foreshadowed that possibly the man was feeling death but couldn’t quite decipher what it was that he was feeling.
- Who or what is the “enemy” in this story? How did the man deal with this enemy? What type of conflict is developed in this story?
– I believe that the enemy in this book was truly only himself. Besides the dog and the man, there were no other interactions with any character form what we read. It was a man vs. self which created conflict in the book. He was the one who chose to make a fire under the tree, if only he could have thought before hand that it probably wasn’t the smartest idea. He made every decision by himself which truly lead him to die. If he would have used a little bit more imagination, he possibly still could have made it back to camp to this day. HE made the path for which died on and made it impossible for himself to have nay type of survival skills.
- Why do you think Jack London gives no name to the man or dog?
– I feel like Jack London chose not to give the characters any names because he wanted to provide his readers with a sense of that the situation that happened in this book could happen to anyone, no matter the gender. If you provide a name in the story, usually it generally makes whatever happens in the story, can only happen to those like the character. I think its a good idea with what Jack London did because it really brings the reader into focus and be aware of what’s happening.
- What examples in the story can you find that tell you it was written a long time ago? Could the events in the story occur today? Why or why not?
– Now a days only few people wear moccasins. In this story, the man was wearing moccasins when he was travelling through the Yukon, where now people would use the great big old sorrels to protect their feet from wetness or coldness. When the man gets himself into trouble, like with the wet moccasins, the fires etc., people in these days would have used some type of electronic to call for help, when they are in trouble. In the book, they mention the Klondike Gold Rush, which took place in the late 1800’s. That is another clue for this book being written a long time ago. The events in the story probably wouldn’t occur in today’s world because we have developed ways that would help us in those situations rather than what the man had with him in the story.