White Fang


Jack London

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White Fang: Part 3, Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis

In December, Gray Beaver takes his family to the town of Mackenzie. White Fang is harnessed to Mit-sah's sled. All the dogs come to hate the sled's leader, Lip-lip, because they are forced to chase after him. With Lip-lip's influence diminished, they leave White Fang alone. White Fang could have become their leader, but remains a solitary and tyrannical figure, attacking his fellow dogs at the smallest offense.
The sled's power dynamics shape White Fang's character. Because the pack has treated him ruthlessly in the past, he is loath to take up leadership over them. Instead, he would rather oppress them with the very traits and tactics that they used against him under Lip-lip's persecution.
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White Fang favors the companionship of man over his fellow dogs. Even so, Gray Beaver and White Fang maintain a relationship of mutual respect, but little affection.
Though White Fang cherishes man's companionship, Gray Beaver commands only White Fang's obedience and respect, but not his love.
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White Fang bites a boy who attempts to club him, but Gray Beaver defends White Fang, even though biting a human is a serious offense. Gray Beaver defends White Fang again when he attacks a group of boys who were bullying Mit-sah. From these experiences, White Fang learns to defend his master and his property.
Gray Beaver's defense of White Fang teaches him that his master's law is preeminent above all others. White Fang's willingness to defend his master here forebodes his later efforts to defend Judge Weeden.
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