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By Lynn M. Stone

Publication by way of Stone, Lynn M.

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Sample text

But he had saved 45 himself by not becoming a mere pampered house-dog. Hunting and kindred outdoor delights had kept down the fat and hardened his muscles; and to him, as to the cold-tubbing races, the love of water had been a tonic and a health preserver. And this was the manner of dog Buck was in the fall of 1897, when the Klondike strike dragged men from all the world into the frozen North. But Buck did not read the 50 newspapers, and he did not know that Manuel, one of the gardener's helpers, was an undesirable acquaintance.

John S. Mann (1978) agrees that Buck attains a "new identity'' and shows how London reveals the changes in Buck by "almost obsessive preoccupations" with "doubling"that is, with "opposing worlds" and antitheses. " And Christopher Gair (1994) claims that Buck is able to survive the harsh conditions he encounters after he is stolen because of his "ability to double" himselfto "assume a new public (and private) face" when conditions demand it. " And Kenneth S. 35 Some years later, Labor produced a systematic analysis of The Call of the Wild as "a mythic romance"an ancient and intricate tapestry woven with Jungian threads.

The precise geography of the first six chapters, for example, disappears in the final pages. Early in the novel London employed dozens of actual place names; none appear after the first page of the last chapter. As Labor shows, Buck leaves the actual world and enters "the timeless landscape of myth" where London's economical, functional language is also transformed, becoming increasingly lyrical in the final pages and paragraphs. 36 Critics in subsequent years have adopted and adapted these mythic interpretations.

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