Jack London

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Novelist
QUICK FACTS
Date of Birth January 12, 1876
Place of Birth San Francisco, California
Date of Death Nov 22, 1916 (40)
Horoscope Capricorn

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Jack London

John Griffith London was an American novelist, journalist, and social activist. A pioneer in the world of commercial magazine fiction, he was one of the first writers to become a worldwide celebrity and earn a large fortune from writing. He was also an innovator in the genre that would later become known as science fiction. His most famous works include The Call of the Wild and White Fang, both set in the Klondike Gold Rush, as well as the short stories "To Build a Fire", "An Odyssey of the North", and "Love of Life". He also wrote about the South Pacific in stories such as "The Pearls of Parlay", and "The Heathen". London was part of the radical literary group "The Crowd" in San Francisco and a passionate advocate of unionization, workers' rights, socialism, and eugenics. He wrote several works dealing with these topics, such as his dystopian novel The Iron Heel, his non-fiction exposé The People of the Abyss, The War of the Classes, and Before Adam.

Born: John Griffith Chaney, January 12, 1876, San Francisco, California, U.S.
Died: November 22, 1916, Glen Ellen, California, U.S.
Occupation: Novelist, journalist, short story writer and essayist
Literary movement: Realism, Naturalism
Notable works: The Call of the Wild, White Fang
IMDb: Jack London's IMDb
iTunes: Jack London's iTunes

About Jack London

American author best known for his adventure novels The Call of the Wild and White Fang, as well as for such short stories as To Build a Fire and The Pearls of Parlay. He was also a well-known activist for workers' rights; his non-fiction work, The People of the Abyss, exposed the terrible working conditions and lives of the London poor.

Before Fame

He grew up in the San Francisco area, where his passion for literature was encouraged by local librarian and later California Poet Laureate, Ina Coolbrith. In his young adulthood, London began working long days at a local cannery, but was able to borrow money in order to buy his sloop, Razzle-Dazzle, and become an oyster pirate.

Achievement

A mountain in British Columbia and a lake in Russia were named in his honor.

Family Life

He was the biological son of astrologer William Chaney, but was raised by his mother Flora Wellman and his stepfather John London. Jack London was married twice: to Elizabeth Maddern and Charmian Kittredge. He had two daughters; Joan and Bessie.

Associations

He is the author of White Fang, which was made into a 1991 film starring Ethan Hawke.

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Latest information about Jack London updated on November 25, 2020.

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