John Barleycorn or Alcoholic Memoirs by Jack London (1876 - 1916)


  • Chapter 37

Chapter 37

Thursday 1st January 1970

Join the discussion on Jack London's experiences with alcoholism in John Barleycorn Chapter 37. Explore London's brutally honest analysis of his struggles and encounters with the demon and god of alcohol.
19 minutes

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John Barleycorn or Alcoholic Memoirs by Jack London (1876 - 1916)
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Exploring Jack London's Battle Against Alcoholism in John Barleycorn Chapter 37

And he is guilty of his own unmasking, with his own genial chemistry, turning the tables on himself, with his own maggots, biting alive the old illusions, resurrecting and making to sound again the old voice from beyond of my youth, telling me again that still are mine.
In Chapter 37 of John Barleycorn, Jack London delves deep into his personal experiences with alcoholism. He uses the allegory of John Barleycorn to explore the demon and god of alcohol, as well as his own struggles with addiction. London critiques the rationality and sentimentality that surround the topic of addiction, and instead focuses on the role of illusion in perpetuating it. Drawing from the literary and philosophical influences of his time, London's writing is honest, thought-provoking, and raw.
Join the discussion on to explore London's analysis of addiction and the enduring power of his writing. Listen to the episode now here on