Jack London’s The Call of the Wild Essay

As Buck watched the other dogs chow down on their food, his breath warmed his chest as he let out a low growl to Spitz. The sly Spitz had taken Buck’s food and outsmarted him. Buck soon learned that living in this condition would require new knowledge and a quick thinking mind. Even though other dogs are almost as wild as he is, Buck possesses the quality of intelligence. In Jack London’s The Call of the Wild, his intelligence allows him to become the only member of his pack to survive because of his shrewd hasty actions, his ability to weigh out consequences, and his flexibility in adapting to his new environment.

Buck has the ability to make quick but intelligent decisions with little or no time to think about it. Buck has to make these conclusions in circumstances such as when he saves Thornton from getting carried away in the river. “Buck had sprung in on the instant; and at the end of three hundred yards, amid a mad swirl of water, he overhauled Thornton” (Page 65). As soon as Thornton falls into the rapids, Buck leaps to his feet without thinking twice if he should risk his life or not. As Buck went to save Thornton from the river, he put his own life at risk to save Thornton. He also used this quality in the final fight against Spitz. In the fight, Buck has to think quickly on what he will do, such as to leap out of the way or attack. Buck has the advantage of hasty but shrewd thinking, which helps him with the fight and stay out of danger’s path. The quality allowing him to make decisions in life or death situations helps him survive in the middle of the harsh, cold wilderness.

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Faced with tough decisions, Buck has the ability to weigh out the consequences of each side of a problem. Buck is faced with tough choices he nev…

…in his pack. These qualities combined make him a strong dog that is able to become the single survivor of his pack.

Buck’s intelligence allows him to become the only member of his pack to become strong and smart enough to survive. He has a gut feeling that there is danger just up ahead and realizes that his pack is not strong enough to handle it. He rebels against Hal, refusing to get up even when he was dying from the beatings. As soon as he was out of harm’s way, he did not help the rest of the dogs break loose from their lashings, but instead sits quietly watching them. He knows that they were too scared or too weak to rebel against Hal and his club and did as they were told, even though they knew it would lead them to danger. Buck’s incredible intelligence allows him to rebel and not face the fate the rest of his pack faced that cold winter day on the icy lake.


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