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AuthorJack London
Original title"Diable — A Dog"
CountryUnited States
Genre(s)Short story
Published inThe Cosmopolitan
Publication date1902

"Bâtard" is a short story by Jack London, first published in 1902 under the title "Diable — A Dog" in The Cosmopolitan before being renamed to "Bâtard" in 1904. The story follows Black Leclère and Bâtard, two "devils", one in a man and the other in a wolfdog. Their intense hatred of each other forms the plot as each wants to kill the other, despite having a master and pet relationship. At the end, Bâtard ends up killing his owner, but is later killed himself.

The story is a study of an animal's reaction to its treatment by man. There were complaints of the way the dog's behavior was described and London followed up on the same theme with The Call of the Wild.


"Bâtard" means bastard or mongrel and "diable" means devil in French. Both are descriptive of the dog.


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