Jack London: The Call of the Wild

(2557 words)
  • Susan Gatti (Indiana University of Pennsylvania)

Jack London’s 1903 novel, The Call of the Wild, occupies a unique position in literary culture. Widely translated, this best-selling work resists easy classification. Best known as a robust adventure story featuring a once-pampered dog impressed into hard labor as a Klondike sled-dog, The Call of the Wild can be variously categorized as naturalism, social protest, historic saga, captivity tale, animal story and action-packed realism. The novel, strongly influenced by London’s reading of Charles Darwin and Herbert Spencer as well as his alignment with socialist thought, showcases three significant facets of literary production: awareness of social, political and economic realities; artistic representation of a discrete l…

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Gatti, Susan. "The Call of the Wild". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 31 January 2011
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=1335, accessed 25 September 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Adventure Fiction