View Full Version : Jack London--problems with depression

Rosie Cotton
03-14-2006, 09:26 PM
Jack London had serious problems with depression and actually killed himself. He liked dogs more than humans in reality. How do you think that this affected his writing?

03-14-2006, 09:33 PM
What's wrong with liking dogs better than people? Dogs are better than people.

Seriously, I haven't read a lot of Jack London. From what I remember, he was really good at describing a technique of something (like building a campfire, if I can trust my memory) and make it interesting. His characters didn't seem to be to complex.

Rosie Cotton
03-14-2006, 10:44 PM
I think you can see his love of dogs (the more survival-oriented animals) in that simplicity. If you've ever read "To Build a Fire," he shows that the instinct of the dog, causes him to live.

I have a chronic fear of dogs...nearly a phobia in fact. I look around corners for dogs before going around them. But I don't mean to say that Jack London was evil for that. Not at all. A little abnormal yes, but nothing wrong with it.

03-14-2006, 10:53 PM
I think I have read "To Build A Fire" athough I just don't recall the work exactly.

As to your fear of dogs, you really should get over it. Most dogs just want to sniff you for identificaton. Most dogs are not aggressive.

Rosie Cotton
03-14-2006, 11:24 PM
Well, I've always feared dogs, and then at the age of six, I was bitten twelve times in a row, so it's a sort of trauma that I can't convince myself out of. The dog was insane, been abused as a puppy, so when there's no dog around, I can rationalize it and not fear dogs, but when a dog comes, I can feel the teeth again, and I can hear my screams, and my mind's uncontrollable again. So, it's sort of not a thing I can convince myself out of, nor that anyone else can convince me out of. Trust me, my dad's side of the family says they're part dog, and my dad can pretty much talk to dogs. They obey his every whim. Trust me, they've tried to convince me out of it. It doesn't work.

But "To Build a Fire", albeit strange, had a good point I think. If you want to read it, it's short, only about 7,000 words. http://london.sonoma.edu/Writings/LostFace/fire.html. There's a link if you're interested.

03-14-2006, 11:35 PM
Thank you for the link.

I'm sorry if I had you recall such a bad experience with dogs. Well it sounds like you won't be able to get over it easily. It's too bad. Dogs make such reat companions.

Rosie Cotton
03-15-2006, 01:30 AM
Oh no worries, it only bothers me when I'm in the company of a dog. If there's not a dog around, I can talk about it as though it were a dinner date I had last Thursday.

All the same, another question, what sort of works do you suppose Mr. London could have brought to us if he had not taken his own life? It's rather tragic really.

03-15-2006, 11:32 PM
I am not a student of his work, so I wouldn't be the right person to ask.