To Build a Fire

Read “To Build a Fire” by Jack London.
Responding to the Story

  • 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 did you first suspect that the man was going to die? How is his death foreshadowed?
  • 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?
  • Why do you think Jack London gives no name to the man or dog?
  • 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?

Literature Studies: Short Story Theme
In “To Build a Fire,” Jack London not only tells his story convincingly, and entertainingly, he also expresses his feelings about the North and how people react to it.

  • In a sentence, write what you think the author’s theme is. List three examples from the story to s support your view. For each example, write a sentence that explains why it supports the author’s theme.

Writing an Essay
Look over the notes you’ve made so far. What you have written may be enough for a rough outline for an essay about the story’s theme.

  • The sentence you wrote about the author’s theme is your thesis. this is a statement or viewpoint you are trying to prove or explain.
  • The sentences you wrote for the examples are similar to the topic sentences you might write for the body of your essay. They develop and prove your thesis.
  • Review your notes. Is your thesis clear and easy to understand? Do your examples support your thesis or do they stray from its topic. Revise your sentence outline.
  • Now write a five-paragraph essay. The first paragraph will be your introduction and include your thesis sentence. Write a paragraph for each of your topic sentences. End your essay with a one-paragraph summary or conclusion. Work with a partner to edit and revise your essay.

Research: Gather Facts
“To Build a Fire” takes place in the Yukon. Use online sources to find out more about the first large settlement in the Yukon during the Klondike Gold Rush. List each fact you discover. Include a link to the source of each fact you collect. Divide your facts into categories, for example, the type of people who went there, or how people traveled to the gold fields. Using these categories as guidelines, write a brief report.

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A Red Red Rose

O my luve is like a red, red rose
That’s newly sprung in June;
My love is like the melodie
That’s sweetly played in tune.

As fair art thou, my bonny lass,
So deep in luve am I;
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
Till a’ the seas gang dry.

Till a’ the seas gang dry, my dear,
And the rocks melt wi’ the sun;
I will luve thee still, my dear,
While the sands o’ life shall run.

And fare thee weel, my only love!
And fare thee weel, awhile!
And I will come again, my love
Though it were ten thousand mile.
– Robert Burns

“A Red Red Rose” by Robert Burns is a classic song, considered one of the greatest love songs ever written.

Theme:

The strength and endurance of true love is everlasting.

Techniques:

Rhyme, rhythm, assonance, parallel structure, hyperbole, alliteration, simile, symbolism, apostrophe.

Issues:

Will the speaker return to his love?

What difficulty do you encounter while reading this poem? How did you deal with the problem?

The poem contains a number of examples of hyperbole. Can you identify them? Which do you think is the greatest exaggeration?

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The Next Dr. Frankenstein

Suppose you are going to make a monster out of body parts robbed from graves. For the monster’s brain, you will use the brain of a dead criminal. Little did you know that this criminal’s last thought before dying was his intention to kill his partner, Hans. Because this thought is still in the brain that you put into your monster, it is the first thought that the monster has when you bring him to life. So, naturally, the first thing your monster does is kill Hans. Are you responsible for Hans’ death? Would it make a difference if you knew this would happen? In this thought experiment you have brought a future killer to life. If God exists, he brings future killers to life every day. Is he responsible for the resulting deaths? Why or why not?

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The Wheelbarrow Girl

Molly Malone
In Dublin’s fair city,
Where the girls are so pretty,
I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone,
As she wheeled her wheel-barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”

“Alive, alive, oh,
Alive, alive, oh,”
Crying “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh”.

She was a fishmonger,
But sure ’twas no wonder,
For so were her father and mother before,
And they wheeled their barrows,
Through the streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”

(chorus)

She died of a fever,
And no one could save her,
And that was the end of sweet Molly Malone.
But her ghost wheels her barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”

(chorus)x2

Stop to talk with Molly Malone and, on the pretext of buying some mussels from her, strike up a conversation with her about her life and her dreams.
Write the dialogue that goes on between you.

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Excess Packaging

Look around your own home to find items that have been marketed with excess packaging. Use your research for the basis of a post on household waste. You may include specific product references to excess packaging.

Select one of the products you identified above. Write a letter to the manufacturer expressing your concerns about the excess packaging used to market this item. In your letter, offer suggestions on how the manufacturer might use environmentally friendly packaging. Remember, business letters should be polite, economical, and firm.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/k-cup-creator-john-sylvan-regrets-inventing-coffee-making-system-1.2982660?cmp=rss

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Fences

What are the main purposes for building fences?

What ideas are suggested about fences in the following photos?

Collect images of fences. Can you find images that seem to suggest an idea related to a course focus question?

Create your own photo essay or bulletin board poster(try Adobe Indesign) featuring a photograph of a fence.

Make sure your poser can be read from about 2 meters away. Your photoessay should contain 3-5 images with only a couple sentences arguing your photo’s connection to your focus.

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Eating Noises

I knew a man who went into a rage if anybody ate an apple within his hearing. I knew another man who was so disgusted by his son’s eating habits that he made him eat his dinner alone. Do you have such quirks about other people’s eating habits as you encounter them in restaurants and other public places? Write an essay about people with such habits. Describe your responses to them.

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The Life of an Artist

The life of an artist is very appealing because it permits individual expression. If you had your way, what kinds of an artist would you like to be? Compose an essay in which you describe the achievements you would make and the acclaim success would bring you?

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