Back to Select a Text

The Call of the Wild

Chapter 3

Previous Page Page 17 Next Page

The Dominant Primordial Beast

26bucksnowyhill
d

The Resources Resources Stop and Think! dominant primordial beast was strong in Buck, and under the fierce conditions of trail life it grew and grew. Yet it was a secret growth. His newborn cunning gave him poise and control. He was too busy adjusting himself to the new life to feel at ease, and not only did he not pick fights, but he avoided them whenever possible. A certain deliberateness characterized his attitude. He was not prone to rashness and precipitate action; and in the bitter hatred between him and Spitz he betrayed no impatience, shunned all offensive acts.

On the other hand, possibly because he divined in Buck a dangerous rival, Spitz never lost an opportunity of showing his teeth. He even went out of his way to bully Buck, striving constantly to start the fight which could end only in the death of one or the other. Literary Device

Early in the trip this might have taken place had it not been for an unwonted accident. At the end of this day they made a bleak and miserable camp on the shore of Lake Le Barge. Driving snow, a wind that cut like a white-hot knife, and darkness, had forced them to grope for a camping place. Literary DeviceThey could hardly have fared worse. At their backs rose a perpendicular wall of rock, and Perrault and Francois were compelled to make their fire and spread their sleeping robes on the ice of the lake itself. The tent they had discarded at Yea in order to travel light. A few sticks of driftwood furnished them with a fire that thawed down through the ice and left them to eat supper in the dark.

Close in under the sheltering rock Buck made his nest. So snug and warm was it, that he was loath to leave it when Francois distributed the fish which he had first thawed over the fire. But when Buck finished his ration and returned, he found his nest occupied. A warning snarl told him that the trespasser was Spitz. Till now Buck had avoided trouble with his enemy, but this was too much. The beast in him roared. He sprang upon Spitz with a fury which surprised them both, and Spitz particularly, for his whole experience with Buck had gone to teach him that his rival was an unusually timid dog, who managed to hold his own only because of his great weight and size.

Go to page: of 80
Previous Page Page 17 Next Page

Stop and Think!

Level Level 1Level 2Level 3
Close

Characterization

Author's Craft

Interpret the characterization, or clues about the character in this selection. Choose the statement that best describes what Buck is like.


Click "Show" to see the clues that helped the coaches make their interpretations.
Show

Click on the Coaches for help.

MontyHaliPedro


Stop and Think!

Level Level 1Level 2Level 3
Close

Characterization

Author's Craft

Now you can be creative and mix up your own characterization for the story. What kind of character would you like to make Buck?




Click "Show" to see the parts you can change.
Show

Choose from the pull-downs to create your new characterization. Remember your goal as you choose! Click "Done" when you are ready.


Click on the Coaches for help.

MontyHaliPedro


Stop and Think!

Level Level 1Level 2Level 3
Close

Characterization

Author's Craft
Text help toolbar

Use the Text Help toolbar located above to highlight and collect the words and phrases that provide the characterization in this passage. Paste them into your word processor and write, sketch, or discuss your response.


Click on the Coaches for help.

MontyHali

Close Window

Check Your Work

Oops! Looks like you forgot to choose an answer.





Close Window

Check Your Work


:-(

Here is your version:
:-(

:-(



Close Window

Monty's Thoughts

When I read about Buck, I found that he learned quickly, but was careful not to draw attention to his cleverness. This made me realize that Buck is very smart and prudent.

Close Window

Hali's Thoughts

When I am trying to understand characterization, I notice the character's thoughts or statements, and I look at the illustrations. Buck, standing on top of on the snowy hill, looks watchful and focused here.

Close Window


Pedro's Self Check

Ask yourself these questions when trying to understand characterization:

What does the character look like?

How does the character behave towards others? How do others behave toward the character?

What does the character seem to care about?

What adjectives does the author use to describe the character's personality?

What does the character think or say?

Close Window

Monty's Thoughts

I chose to change Buck into an insecure and nervous dog. I kept reminding myself of the character that I wanted Buck to be, and chose the relevant descriptions in the pull down boxes.

Close Window

Hali's Thoughts

When I am choosing words and phrases to make a new kind of character, I use adjectives to describe appearance, or describe actions or thoughts that signal to the reader what my character is like.

Close Window


Pedro's Self Check

Ask yourself these questions when trying to understand characterization:

What does the character look like?

How does the character behave towards others? How do others behave toward the character?

What does the character seem to care about?

What adjectives does the author use to describe the character's personality?

What does the character think or say?

Close Window

Monty's Thoughts

When I read about Buck, I found that he learned quickly, but did not show it off so that he could avoid trouble. This made me realize that Buck is very smart and prudent.

Close Window

Hali's Thoughts

When I am trying to understand characterization, I notice the character's thoughts or statements, and I look at the illustrations. Buck, standing on top of on the snowy hill, looks watchful and focused here.