University of Languages and International Studies
American Literature Assignment 1
Student: Nguyễn Duy Tuấn
Love and instinct
Standing out the novel The call of the wild written by Jack London is the conflict within the dog Buck between the wild instinct and the love to human: “a call sounding imperiously deep in the forest” (London 66) and “the love for John Thornton (which) drew him back to the fire again” (London 67).
Buck appeared to be a tamed dog. He was pleased with the leisure life “at a big house in the sun-kissed Santa Clare Valley”. Forced jumping in the job as a sled dog, he accepted and quickly learn new rules of work to become a industrious staff and complete his role. Most readers here may think that Buck has accepted his fate to be a perfect sled dog. But the situation changed when Buck met John Thornton, who is his “ideal master” (London 64). This was the first time Buck felt the special feeling within himself – the love:
Love, genuine passionate love, was his for the first time. This he had never experienced at Judge Miller’s down in the sun-kissed Santa Clara Valley. [...] But love that was feverish and burning, that was adoration, that was madness, it had taken John Thornton to arouse. (London 64)
The love has made Buck nearer to the civilization. He can contribute all his life to his dear master – Thornton. This may be a happy ending for Buck to return to the home life as a pet dog, but the conflict appeared when the original instinct awoke inside Buck, when he began receiving signals from the primitive “mysteriously thrilling and luring” (London 65). This power grew upper and upper, alarming that Buck would was moving towards the wild:
So peremptorily did these shades beckon him, that each day mankind and the claims of mankind slipped farther from him. (London 66)
The conflict jumped to the climax when Buck had to decided where he belonged to. And at that time, the love to human...
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