The Life of Jack London
Jack London was an American writer and journalist and a huge supporter and activist for socialism. London had several widely popular novels including The Call of the Wild, White Fang, and The Sea Wolf. London’s writing career was not just given to him, he faced many hardships, but worked hard to become a successful writer.
On January 12, 1876 Flora Wellman gave birth to John Griffith Chaney, Better know as Jack London, in San Francisco California, she was not married at the time (“Jack London Biography” 1). London’s mother suffered a life of illness and was left unable to take care of him, instead Virginia Prentiss, a former slave, took care of him for the first eight months of his life. London’s father, William Chaney, was an attorney, journalist, and an astrologist. His father never was a significant part of his career or life (Stasz 1).
London’s mother married John London, who had fought in the Civil War. John London moved his family, Including Jack London, throughout San Francisco before finally moving them to Oakland (1). In Oakland, at age 5, London started helping his step father with the laborious job of farming.
At age fourteen London graduated from grammar school. His family could not afford to send him to high school so he started working at a canning factory in Oakland. London spent countless hours working at very demanding job (1). In London’s free time he would be at the library reading novels and books about travel, his reading was inspired by the local librarian (“Jack London Biography” 1).
His love for reading made him realize that there was an entire world outside of his hometown in Oakland, he wanted to escape, which he did through drinking. This began his lifelong battl...
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...w a number of different crops (4).
London’s life was plagued with illness and alcoholism, at the time of his death in 1916 London had dysentery and kidney failure caused by his extreme alcoholism (“Jack London: Novels and Stories” 1). London was in extreme pain and was taking morphine, he died from an overdose and it is rumored that his death was suicide (1). London was cremated and his ashes were buried on his ranch next to his wife who died later in 1955 (1).
London’s writing career was not just given to him, he faced many hardships, but he worked hard to become a successful writer. His life was full of illness and addiction that he struggled with. London was a very successful and hard working writer and overcame obstacles that could have held him back, but he was determined to get out of poverty and support his family which he more than succeeded in doing.
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