Arrogance In Jack London's To Build A Fire

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Arrogance is Dangerous In the short story “To Build a Fire” by Jack London, the author analyzes the similarities of humans logic and animal instincts in a life or death situation. The story takes place in a arctic winter where a man and his dog are trekking through a frozen forest to get to another town. Soon after he leaves, the man realizes that it is a lot colder than he had thought when his spit freezes instantly in the air instead of it freezing when it hits the ground. Despite this discovery and the fact of humans only being able to “live within certain narrow limits of heat and cold”(London 482), the man decided to continue on towards his destination. During the whole time the man was just trying to prove it to others that he able to conquer these conditions, while the dog knows that the cold they are enduring is nothing to test. These arrogant driven decisions…show more content…
At the beginning, it explains that the man form Sulfur Creek had always warned the man of where he making his trek was going to be extremely tough to bare, but the man kept insisting that it was nothing he could not handle. Because the man underestimated almost every situation, by the end of the story, he had put himself into a rut where “he realized that it was no longer a mere matter of loosing his hands and feet… but it was a matter of life and death”(London 490). The dog, however, “merely obeyed the mysterious prompting that arose from the deep crypts of its being”(485 London) much like when the dog fell into a hidden river. This was a crucial situation because the ice would freeze on his feet which would inevitably lead to death. Even though the dog does not cognitively deducting this problem, the its instinct realized this and made it lick the ice off its feet. The human’s cognitive thinking lead to arrogance, but the dog’s instinct lead him in the correct direction to lead to his
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