Authors We Love: Jack London

Jack London - Oakland - LocalWiki

In Jack London’s works, one can often feel the complex of heroism. There is the worship of life itself and the pursuit of primitive form and spiritual freedom for the meaning of life and existence. In Jack London’s work, the protagonist is merged with the harsh wasteland, where life tends to take on a primitive form, releasing a desire that is the opposite of what the vulgar world will never be familiar with, a kind of intense, leaping and even violent emotional anger. The combination of freedom and passion of Dionysus gives out the most primitive call of life — tenacious survival.

Jack London is a writer of very complex ideologies. For many ideas that influenced the social history at that time, London accepted them almost without any choice. Influenced by the social and historical environment at that time, and without any formal and systematic education, London’s ideological beliefs were complicated and contradictory. As a result, many London researchers believe that London’s thinking is chaotic and lawless. His philosophical views, though confounded and discouraged by their many contradictions, should be carefully combed and studied. Jack London, a writer with the ideas of reform and progress, keeps pace with the times and views women from a broader perspective.

Far from being an anticlimatic feminist, However, London advocated women’s independence while also extolling the traditional virtues of women as faithful male partners. London not only expressed her definition of the “perfect woman” but also greatly enriched the female characters in American literature by creating a group of “superwoman” characters who were gentle, submissive, strong, and capable. London and his work provide a case study of American society and culture at the time. The period of childhood and adolescence in London was very miserable. Although London’s works are vast, fragmented and difficult to categorize, it is possible to draw a simple line through the works of early, middle and late London. That is the transition from the male-dominated narrative to the female-dominated narrative, through which is London’s eternal love for life and endless exploration and pursuit of the meaning of life.

-Coreen C.

Book Review: Martin Eden by Jack London

Martin Eden - Jack London | Feedbooks

Martin Eden is a semi-autobiographical novel written by American writer Jack London. The story tells about young sailor Martin Eden to get acquainted with Miss Rose of high society by chance, be inspired by her, and began his hard creation career. Despite all the setbacks, he still refused to obey Rose’s arrangement to enter her father’s office and become a promising young man. Then his fortune suddenly changed, and manuscripts that had previously been rejected were published and he became a popular writer. Friends and relatives who despised him before fell over each other to invite him to dinner, and Miss Rose who had broken up with him also came to throw herself on him. This makes him see clearly this world as a cold society; the wonderful illusion that holds him to love also is also disillusioned thoroughly.

In the real American society where Jack London lives, the United States has entered the period of monopoly capitalism. The bourgeoisie not only monopolizes the material wealth of society but also monopolizes the spiritual wealth. The bourgeoisie believes that all good things in the society belong to them, no matter in material life or in spiritual life. In the face of the underclass they turned their noses up. Therefore, in Jack London’s novel Martin Eden, the criticism and accusation of the corruption of the capitalist system, the hypocrisy of the bourgeoisie, and the inequality of class hierarchy can be seen everywhere. Through the description of the text, the reader can see different faces of the characters in the novel and feel the resistance behind feelings of the hero and heroine, their irreconcilable differences in values, and the nature each class in the capitalist society.

-Coreen C.

Book Review: White Fang, by Jack London

white_fang_coverThis month, I am blogging about a book that I have always wanted to read, yet have never had a chance to read, until now. White Fang by Jack London is one of those classics that people are always telling me about, yet, even though I am always reading something, I have never read it. As soon as I picked it up and looked at the back cover, I knew that it would be a book that I would like a lot.

I do not want to give the whole plot away, but White Fang starts out as a tiny puppy struggling for survival, half dog and half wolf. He is found by a cruel man named Gray Beaver, whose brother owned White Fang’s mother. Gray Beaver turns White Fang into a nasty and vicious dog that cannot trust anyone, and White Fang has to quickly learn how to hurt, or be hurt, and soon becomes the most feared and hated dog in Gray Beaver’s tribe. Gray Beaver then sells White Fang to an even nastier man named Beauty Smith, who discovers White Fang’s fighting abilities, and has him fight other dogs for money. Without spoiling anything, I can gladly say that the ending is a happy one, where White Fang finally learns that some people can be kind and caring after all.

White Fang is a story of survival, and trust. It is also a story of love and companionship. White Fang is a great story, and I really like Mr. London’s style of writing. He shows what it is really like to be out in the harsh lonely world with no one to trust, and no one on which to rely. White Fang is not the best book I have ever read, but I really enjoyed it, and would recommend it to anyone above nine years old (a little of a complicated read for younger children), boy or girl, who enjoys reading, especially about animals and nature. All in all, White Fang is definitely a great book and I would most certainly read it again.

-Will R., 9th grade