Jack London Online
Jack London is perhaps best known as a writer, but he was also an innovative agriculturalist, adventurer, journalist, and proud socialist. He was a child of the Gilded Age, growing up in a working-class area of Oakland. While very young, he observed the inequalities in American society and the struggles of the poor. By early adulthood determined to rise above his station through the written word. It was a daring plan, yet mentors saw his promise and helped him break into journalism and fiction. He was endlessly curious and read widely in many fields, from philosophy to animal husbandry, from poetry to Darwinism. His boundless self-confidence led him to try unusual challenges, such as the decision to sail around the world or to create a self-sustainable ranch.
Often thought of as very manly, London was also deeply sensitive, generous, and kind. He he loved animals, poetry, music, and plays. He helped paroled prisoners and support prison reform. His dark side included periods of depression, binges of alcohol, anti-Semitism, and mixed ideas about race. Though feminist, he could be thoughtless toward his wives and daughters.
A polymath, he attracts many kinds of readers. His writings include romances, science fiction, fantasy, adventure, and political tracts. Over a hundred years after his death, he remains in print in many languages. Jack London State Historic Park attracts visitors from around the globe as well.
Though London thought himself self-made, he was the product of his time and the people around him. We include references to such themes as Progressivism, the Arts and Crafts Movement, and the Socialism of his day. Similarly, we include information on key figures, his family and friends. This background information can direct the reader deeper into London's life and better appreciate his ideas and arguments.
Certain topics of broad interest are discussed on the FAQ page. These include contacting the editor, preparing a school essay, London's use of alcohol and drugs, his racial beliefs, his Credo, and his article "The Scab."
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