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To Build a Fire

Uploaded by woodcock_08 on Feb 25, 2001

Sometimes everyone feels like giving up, and the only thing a person can rely on is his will to survive. Giving up is admitting defeat, in every circumstance. In the story by Jack London, To Build a Fire, the main character learns a hard lesson of reality, when he meets his fate. The result came about because of many factors, mainly the man’s lack of psychological perserverance on the journey, as well as the harsh temperature and surroundings. If there was any hope for the man to survive these conditions, it would rely wholey on his persistance and motivation. The man expected his fate after it was too late to change it, weighing all the variables and realizing there was no probable way to escape his prediciment. The man’s fate was ultimately decided by his lack of imagination and carelessness.

Beginning the tale, the man is secure in his journey and firmly believes even though he is traveling alone, he will be successful in his pursuit. He discounted the advice from men from Sulphur Creek, who advised it was potentially hazardous to travel alone. He had false confidence in himself. For example, despite the dangerously cold temperatures, he did not take necessary precautions when he built his first crucial fire. Then, when he realized his mistake, he didn’t realize how serious it was until he could not start another effective fire. If the man would have had an additional human to accompany him on his journey, he would have been initially much safer. He showed carelessness in preparation by his excess selfconfidence for the trek.

Also, throughout his entire journey, the man concentrated on how cold it was around him. He constantly decided how cold it was and how he didn’t like to be as cold as he was. Inevitably, the psychological factors wore his mind and soul down to make him only think how cold he was. By the end of his situation, any warmth, whether by the sleep of death or fire, was all the man could think about. Without any imagination to focus his thoughts elsewhere, the man helped himself collapse into his final doom.

When the time came to build a fire to survive the first accident in the water, his irresponsibility essentially cost him his life. He forgot to build a fire promptly after he got wet, which made it extremely difficult build one after it....

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Uploaded by:   woodcock_08

Date:   02/25/2001

Category:   Literature

Length:   3 pages (575 words)

Views:   2031

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