To Build a Fire by Jack London

To Build a Fire book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What is the relationship between man and nature in "To Build a Fire"?

What is the relationship between man and nature in "To Build a Fire"?

Expert Answers info

William Delaney eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write5,416 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Nature is totally indifferent to man in Jack London's story "To Build a Fire." Nature is a simple fact. It doesn't care in the least whether the protagonist makes it to the camp or whether he manages to build a fire or whether he freezes to death. In stories like this in which the conflict is man versus nature, it may often seem as if the mountain, the storm, the flood, the ocean, or other natural element or phenomenon has a conscious motive, but this is never the case, whether man seems to be conquering nature or nature seems to be conquering man. Stephen Crane highlighted the total indifference of nature to human fate in some of his stories, notably in "The Open Boat."...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 384 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

mickey2bailey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write134 answers

starTop subjects are Literature and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

malibrarian eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write722 answers

starTop subjects are Literature and History

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial