by Jack London
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
The Open Boat
- Stephen Crane
In Stephen Crane's "The Open Boat," several men are stranded at sea in a small dinghy. Crane uses vivid imagery to weave a story about survival, brotherhood, death, and the futility of trying to defeat nature's powerful forces.Pair "The Open Boat" with "To Build a Fire" and ask students to compare each author's use of imagery.
The Law of Life
- Jack London
An old man is left behind by his tribe to die of exposure. As he prepares for death, he reflects on a life spent fighting nature's brutal forces.Pair "The Law of Life" with "To Build a Fire" and ask students to compare Jack London's techniques in each story. How does the theme of man vs. nature emerge in each text?
Lobo, the King of Currumpaw
- Ernest Seton Thompson
This excerpt is taken from his book Wild Animals I Have Known, based on naturalist Ernest Thompson Seton’s true experiences hunting wolves in the American Southwest, including the infamous wolf Lobo.Pair "Lobo The King of Currumpaw" with "To Build a Fire" and ask students to compare how the theme of man vs. nature emerges in each work.
Excerpt from Roughing It: Lost in the Snow
- Mark Twain
In Mark Twain’s “Excerpt from Roughing It: Lost in the Snow,” a speaker and his companions struggle to reach their destination in the snow.Pair “To Build a Fire” with “Excerpt from Roughing It: Lost in the Snow” and ask students to compare how the authors of the two texts describe a wintery landscape. What similar obstacles do the characters of these two texts encounter? How do speakers’ tones differ between these two texts? Why?