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The Call of the Wild by Mind Map: The Call of the Wild
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The Call of the Wild


Jack London

John Griffith "Jack" London was an American author, journalist, and social activist. He was a pioneer in the then-burgeoning world of commercial magazine fiction and was one of the first fiction writers to obtain worldwide celebrity and a large fortune from his fiction alone. Some of his most famous works include The Call of the Wild and White Fang, both set in the Klondike Gold Rush, as well as the short stories "To Build a Fire", "An Odyssey of the North", and "Love of Life". He also wrote of the South Pacific in such stories as "The Pearls of Parlay" and "The Heathen", and of the San Francisco Bay area in The Sea Wolf. London was a passionate advocate of unionization, socialism, and the rights of workers. He wrote several powerful works dealing with these topics, such as his dystopian novel The Iron Heel, his non-fiction exposé The People of the Abyss, and The War of the Classes.

January 12, 1876 – November 22, 1916

American (born in San Francisco)

Author, journalist

Other novels by Jack London, White Fang, The Sea-Wolf, The Iron Heel









Original owner, Judge Miller, Manuel

First proper masters in the north, Francois, Perrault

New masters, Hal, Mercedes, Charles

Final master, John Thornton

Themes, Motives & Symbols


The theme of any literary work is the base topic or focus that acts as a foundation for the entire literary piece. The theme links all aspects of the literary work with one another and is basically the main subject. The theme can be an enduring pattern or motif throughout the literary work, occurring in a complex, long winding manner or it can be short and succinct and provide a certain insight into the story.

The Indispensable Struggle for Mastery

The Power of Ancestral Memory and Primitive Instincts

The Laws of Civilization and of Wilderness

The Membership of the Individual in the Group


A symbol is literary device that contains several layers of meaning, often concealed at first sight, and is representative of several other aspects, concepts or traits than those that are visible in the literal translation alone. Symbol is using an object or action that means something more than its literal meaning.

Mercedes’ Possessions

Buck’s Traces

Buck’s First Beatings with the Club; Curly’s Death

Buck’s Attack on the Yeehats


A motif can be seen as an image, sound, action or other figures that have a symbolic significance and contributes toward the development of theme.

Violent Struggle


General Info


Novel, Animal Fiction





1890s, Klondike Gold Rush

Original Language




American Pastoralism, The mythic hero returns to nature


The novel's central character is a dog named Buck, a domesticated dog living at a ranch in California as the story opens. Stolen from his home and sold into the brutal existence of an Alaskan sled dog, he reverts to atavistic traits. Buck is forced to adjust to, and survive, cruel treatments and fight to dominate other dogs in a harsh climate. Eventually he sheds the veneer of civilization, relying on primordial instincts and lessons he learns, to emerge as a leader in the wild.


First cinematic adaption, 1908, The Call of the Wild: Dog of the Yukon


1. Into the Primitive

toil, work hard

kindred, similar in quality or character

treachery, an act of deliberate betrayal

2. The Law of Club and Fang

loathsome, causing or able to cause nausea

primeval, having existed from the beginning

6. For the Love of a Man

transient, lasting a very short time

array, impressive display


Initial situation

Buck leads a calm and contented life in the "sun-kissed Santa Clara Valley."


Buck is stolen by Manuel and sold to the man in the red sweater.


Spitz and Buck clash and compete for alpha dog status.


Buck’s sled team (minus Buck) crashes through thin ice and drowns.


John Thornton almost dies. Then he actually does die.


Buck leaves the civilized world.


Buck answers the Call of the Wild.