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Analysis Of To Build A Fire By Jack London

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Analysis Of To Build A Fire By Jack London
“To Build a Fire” is a naturalist’s view of the harsh peril that the Yukon can hold. The characters were all in the Yukon and each had different fates due to the willingness to accept the rules of such a harsh climate. The tone and mood help set up such a naturalistic story where one should not trifle with nature. Throughout the story the main character fights himself and the elements to try to survive. “To Build a Fire” by Jack London shows how the dismissal of knowledge and experience due to self-confidence creates arrogance. “To Build a Fire” takes place in the Yukon Wilderness. A gold discovery in 1897 led many to brave the Yukon Wilderness (Murdrock). “Within six months, approximately 100,000 gold-seekers set off for the Yukon. Only 30,000 completed the trip” (Murdrock). The Yukon was a very cold and dangerous place with average temperatures around negative twenty degrees with lows reaching far passed negative fifty degrees (Murdrock). With only thirty percent of gold seekers completing the trip with even less claiming the riches they were seeking.
The main character for “To Build a Fire” was one of these many people who went to the Yukon in search for riches and fame. The story has three main characters that appear. The main
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“The absence of sun from the sky, the tremendous cold, and the strangeness and weirdness of it all made no impression on the man” (London 107). No matter the conditions the newcomer never thought twice about the dangers he knew lay ahead. The newcomer breaks through ice fighting the temperatures that got worse with the wet, after breaking the golden rule never go out alone. Being alone and knowing the temperature was at least fifty degrees below zero, but to him “Fifty degrees below zero was to him just precisely fifty degrees below zero. That there should be anything more to it than that was a thought that never entered his head”

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