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Jack London’s The Call of the Wild

Call of the Wild

Where did man come from? Scientists thought they had answered this simple yet complex question through Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. According to him, living organisms evolved due to constant changing. Organisms which gained an edge would reign, while those without would die. Jack London’s books during the late 1800’s

animated this theory through the use of wild animals in a struggle for survival. In fact, many prove that to survive a species “must” have an edge. In London’s book the Call of the Wild, the harsh depiction of the Klondike wilderness proves that to survive life must adapt.

London uses Buck as his first character to justify his theory as he conforms well

to the hostile North. While at Judge Miller’s, pampered Buck never worries about his

next meal or shelter; yet while in the frozen Klondike he has death at his heels. Until his

body adapts to the strenuous toil of the reins, Buck needs more food than the other dogs.

He must steal food from his masters in order to conform. If Buck continues his stealthy

work he will survive. A second example occurs when Thorton owns Buck, and Spitz,

the lead dog, constantly watches the team in a dominant manner. Buck, if

insubordinate, runs the risk of death. He lays low, learning Spitz’s every tactic. Buck

adapts to circumstances until finally he strikes against Spitz in a fight for the dominant

position. By killing Spitz, he gains a supreme air, and in turn an adaptation against the

law of the fang. A third example surfaces during Buck’s leadership. The fledgling dog,

to Francios and Perrault, cannot work up to par for the lead. So Buck conducts himself

as a master sled dog, reaching Francios and Perrault’s goals, conforming to the team.

The group plows through snow reaching at least forty miles a day. The dogs spend at

most two weeks in the wild Klondike. In a way Buck heightens the safety of each person

and dog. He adapts to the environment and new position. Within the Call of the Wild,

Buck must have a part to justify London’s theory.

In the novel London uses Mercedes, Hal, and Charles, a group of very

inexperienced and even less equipped city goers, to depict the probable doom of those

who do not adapt. While in Skagway the three have no idea what the Klondike holds.

The well dressed well fed team wants nothing but riches and fame. In their effort for

Foils in Shakespeare’s Hamlet

Foils in Hamlet

Hamlet by William Shakespeare is a well known play. Shakespeare uses foils in Hamlet to further create and explain Hamlet’s character. Foils are created in a play to help the audience better understand a major character by giving the character someone to talk to and compare the major character to. [Using the definition as the thesis was not a good idea in this paper. The assignment said not in the first paragraph, i.e., the paper was to be about how foils affect the meaning of this play.]

Foils are minor characters created in a play to help the audience understand a major character better by giving the major character someone to talk to and compare them to. Ophelia can be considered a foil to Hamlet because she helps us see the different attitudes Hamlet has toward certain things. Hamlet, after finding out that his father was murdered, starts acting crazy and giving Ophelia mixed signals about his love for her. Ophelia believes Hamlet loves her but, because of her father’s wishes, constantly turns him down and denies that she feels the same way. Ophelia finally denounces denies that she loves him but Hamlet states that “I did love you once.” He also stated that “You should not have believed me, for virtue cannot so inoculate our old stock but we shall relish of it. I loved you not.” “Get thee to a nunnery.” These lines from the play states [SV -1] that Hamlet was pretending to be delirious and pretending to love Ophelia because of what Claudius has done to his father.

Not only does the scene, “Get thee to a nunnery,” show how Hamlet feels about Ophelia, but it also shows how Hamlet feels about marriage and women. Hamlet tells Ophelia to go to the convent because she should not want to be a “breeder of sinners” and because there should be no more marriage. Hamlet does not want anymore marriage because that would mean more children and according to Hamlet the only children born to marriage are sinners.

Ophelia is also considered a foil for Hamlet because of the difference in the way each grieved for their father’s deaths. The difference between the way Hamlet and Ophelia grieved is that Ophelia’s grief was actually for her father, whereas Hamlet’s grief was for his mother.

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