1997 0-7734-8719-0 This study presents a rigorous engagement with Jack London's novels as representations of a particular moment in American history, situating this attention within the wider project of historical understanding. The first section offers a close reading of London's short story "South of the Slot" (1909), in order to construct a theoretical frame upon which to hang later chapters. It then provides a broad historical overview of the critical traditions that for so long ignored London, suggests reasons why. The remaining chapters are devoted to readings of London's most important novels: Call of the Wild, The Sea-Wolf, White Fang, Martin Eden, The Iron Heel, Burning Daylight, The Valley of the Moon, and The Star Rover. Throughout the study, it foregrounds the constant tension between dominant and counterhegemonic voices in London's fiction, arguing that it is this tension that makes his work such a rich seam for the cultural historian.