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Novel by Jack London, published in 1904.

Humphrey Van Weyden, a dilettante literary critic, is picked up by the sealing schooner Ghost when the ferry boat on which he is traveling across San Francisco Bay collides with a tramp steamer. The captain of the Ghost, Wolf Larsen, is a man of tremendous physical power who is utterly ruthless. When the Ghost, on the sealing grounds off Japan, saves some refugees from an ocean disaster, a struggle commences between the hyper-civilized, moral Van Weyden and the primitive, individualistic Larsen over the poet Maude Brewster. Miss Brewster and Van Weyden escape to a deserted island to which the Ghost, dismasted and near sinking, is later driven. Larsen, deserted by his crew, is aboard, but, blinded by cerebral cancer, is doomed to slow paralysis. Van Weyden and Miss Brewster manage to rehabilitate the vessel and sail back to civilization, but Larsen dies, indomitably pagan.

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards).

Reference entries

Jack London (1876—1916) American novelist

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