To Build A Fire 'And Left For Dead'

820 Words 4 Pages
Many examples of naturalism are shown in the fictional short story, “To Build a Fire,” by Jack London, and in Beck Weathers’ non-fictional memoir, “Left for Dead.” In London’s fictional story, we learn of a man who went adventuring in the Yukon, looking for new trade routes. Unfortunately, the man was stopped short when the weather took a turn for the worst and got so freezing he could not even start a fire and eventually froze to death. In Beck’s story he gets caught up in a huge blizzard on Mount Everest and against all odds ends up surviving somehow. London shows naturalism because he knew he had to start a fire in order to live but not knowing a lot about the outdoors failed to successfully make a fire resulting in his death. As for Weathers, …show more content…
First, he did not take the warning signs into consideration that it was way too cold to be out traveling alone or even in general. For example in the story he goes to spit to see how cold it is and if the spit freezes when it hits the ground it is about 50 degrees below zero but when he spits it freezes before it even hits the ground, which is shown when he says “And again, in the air, before it could fall in the snow, the spittle crackled” (London 1). This shows that his natural instinct should have kicked in and thought to himself that it was way too cold to be outside in this cold of temperatures. Another reason he fails to survive because he accepts the fact that he is not going to make it and basically gives up when he thinks all hope is lost. Once he had his mind set on the fact that he was not gonna make it he fell down and just did not have enough determination to get back up and keep fighting, which is shown when he says “Well, he was bound to freeze anyway, and he might as well take it decently. With this newfound peace of mind came the first glimmerings of drowsiness” (8). By accepting the fact that he was going to pass away from freezing there was no way he was going to beat it. These are examples of naturalism because they show survival of the fittest and he was clearly not the fittest because he did not use determination to keep him alive thus …show more content…
In London’s story, an example of naturalism is seen when the main character did not know how to make a fire in order to survive. In Beck’s story, he showed outstanding survival skills by being the fittest to survive the harsh conditions up on the mountain, when most of his crew faced death. Both used knowledge of their surroundings to attempt to survive the harsh conditions of their situations and both showed the power of nature, to those who are prepared and unprepared. This is what naturalism is all

Related Documents