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White Fang is a story that revolves around an animal which passes through various experiences towards being civilized. White Fang is an animal that is partly dog and partly wolf. The shift in living conditions for the animal is evident as he gradually gains human companionship who decides to tame him. As the story unfolds, White Fang gives up all he has during a fight with a dog before ending up as man’s most loving companion who expresses kindness and love to him (London, 2008, p. 149). The uniqueness of the story is seen when the author explains unfolding of events and associates them with what might be happening in the animal’s mind.
White Fang is born during time of famine and it becomes the only cub that survives as the rest of the litter belonging to the she-wolf die of starvation. The animal faces hardships in his life since even after surviving death from famine at time of his birth, famine strikes again while in the Indian camp. He is thus forced to live in the wild only to return to the Indian man named Gray Beaver, after the end of famine period.
The Indian later sells White Fang to Beauty Smith who forces him to fight other dogs (London, 2008, p. 47). White Fang gains mastery skills in fighting such that he wins every fight until he meets Cherokee who battles him down. White Fang is saved by a man named Scott who decides to tame him, and moves with him to his home in California (London, 2008, p. 131).
There are several themes that are depicted in the book. First, the environment within which the story development is made helps to generate a number of themes and character traits of those involved. For example, at first, Bill and Henry discover that the she-wolf had experienced some lifestyle as a dog. She is found to be familiar with people’s behavior. Though a wolf, she is also familiar with civilized surroundings, something that is commonly associated with domesticated dogs. Furthermore, she is found to get attached to the environment of the civilized people, especially due to the fact that even after raising her cubs in the wild, she later comes back to the Indian camp (London, 2008, p. 14).
White Fang is also depicted as a very adaptive and resilient animal. He takes little time and effort to adapt to the different types of environments that he gets exposed to. Even after he is rescued by Scott, White Fang proves that he is easily teachable and tamable. He learns the rules placed to him very easily such as not to eat chicken among others (London, 2008, p. 123).
The author demonstrates how the environment and the animal’s instinct can be contrasted and harmonized. This is expressed through White Fang’s experience at the river. He is filled by the fear of the unknown and tends not to trust the appearance of the surrounding (London, 2008, p. 77). In fact, he mistakes the river for solid ground and therefore, he falls into the water, hurting himself in the process.
However, the author portrays this incidence as an opportunity to strengthen him so that he can be ready for other hardships in the future (London, 2008, p. 47). Additionally, when Scott tries to place his hand close, White Fang bites him as a defensive mechanism. He believes that what Scott was doing was unsafe for him and therefore, the best alternative for him was to strike back. The effect of long time abuse makes White Fang to bite Scott’s hand in order to defend himself.
Life in the wild is another theme that is well portrayed in the book. The turn of events demonstrates that in the wild, animals have to remain abreast in order to thrive. It is only the strong that survives while the weak are intimidated and taken advantage of. For instance, in order to win the love of she-wolf, the One-Eye fought the other two competitors until he conquered (London, 2008, p. 37). Also, it was after White Fang turned out vicious that he gained mastery of fighting skills such that he won every fight he engaged himself into. This implies that he was the key decision maker among other dogs in the neighborhood due to his aggressiveness.
The author further tries to indicate how much risk a person can get himself into when basic necessities such as food, are unavailable. When the she-wolf is attacked by a lynx, she becomes badly wounded and her cub is endangered. He became endangered due to lack of food (London, 2008, p. 22). The experiences with his mother made White Fang to value her so much, such that even after she was taken away, he still fought for her.
The author used the incidence of White Fang’s abuse by Lip-lip to portray the development of his character traits. He learnt the best way to survive was through fighting all other dogs in the camp. He became very vicious and since he could not befriend any other dog within the compound, he chased them way as a strategy to protect himself (London, 2008, p. 27).
Throughout the story, the reader is engaged as the protagonist. The reader’s attention is captured and he is made to follow the experiences of White Fang. The author appeals to the reader’s emotions as he is taken through feelings of hurt and fear which corresponds with White Fang’s experiences (London, 2008, p. 26). The readers become so engage such that they even tell what is going around White Fang’s mind. Furthermore, the story is presented in a poetic format thereby engaging someone into another world and time altogether (London, 2008, p. 26).
There are three kinds of readers, motor, auditory and visual readers. Motor readers are very slow in reading since they have to synchronize their reading with various muscle movements (Weverka and Sutz, 2009, p.26). On the other hand, auditory readers are able to say words in their minds without necessarily pronouncing them. They are relatively faster than motor readers. Lastly, visual readers simply look at a word and they understand its meaning. They are very fast in reading (Weverka and Sutz, 2009, p.26). Out of the three categories, I am a visual reader.
The story was written in past tense owing to the unique characteristics of this type of tense. First, the past tense sounds natural. This is because; the story involved presenting a report. Therefore, the best way to present reported information is through the use of past tense. The tense used was also original and innovative besides adding vigor to the story. One of the main weaknesses of using present tense instead of past tense to write a story is that, it draws attention to itself thereby depriving the story off its flavor.
The author created a lot of suspense as the story unfolded such that it even became very hard for a reader to predict what would happen next. The unexpected turn of events acted as a source of motivation to the readers such that they felt to stay on course so as to discover how White Fang will ultimately end up being. Besides, White Fang went through very harsh situations that made the reader to become engrossed by the story (London, 2008, p. 98).
The author aroused emotions of pain, fear and loneliness in the reader as they tried to visualize the adverse and dangerous scenarios that White fang went through (London, 2008, p. 26). This quality of the story attracts readers’ attention making them to keep on reading until they finally discover White Fang’s fate. The story has continued to gain popularity owing to its vivid display of nature’s unforgiving cruelty in the wild and the survival for the fittest that is familiar to all life.