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Man's Best Friend

             Every so often I will come across an author that I totally don't agree with yet for some reason find irresistible interesting. One such author is Jack London. What interested me the most about Jack London was his book "The Call of the Wild." In the first chapter he plays a trick on me that so many authors of stories I have read recently seem to be doing. He leads me to believe the "character" Buck is a person, but then I come to find out that he is a dog, but in the end Buck seems to me to be more of a real person than dog. This essay will take a look at this "trickery" found in chapter one of "The Call of the Wild.".
             The reader is immediately introduced to the main theme of this story, the combination and interchanging of humans and animals. The first sentence of the chapter, "Buck did not read the newspapers," is misleading. It is also worth noting because it is repeated. In my opinion this is extremely deliberate. Between the two instances where this sentence appears, London seeks to toy with our conceptions of dogs and people. The first time I read it, I assumed that the name refered to a person. When I found out that Buck was a dog, it seemed logical that he should not be literate and able to read the paper. However, London plays with the concept of humanity when he describes Buck as a ruler, "king over all creeping, crawling, flying things of Judge Miller's place, humans included." Placing a dog above humans might seem laughable, but the author writes in such a simple, matter-of-fact tone that the reader is forced to take him seriously. He provides us with an account of Buck's relatives, just like the people of that time frame might do when introducing friends. Buck lives the life of a "sated aristocrat," and he is egotistical as "country gentlemen" tend to be. He maintains a sleek figure through exercise, as many who are well-known and well-to-do are. I noticed the class of society with which this dog is being associated.

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