Christopher Mccandless Symbolism

Decent Essays

Transcendental ideas filled the veins of Christopher McCandless throughout Into the Wild. Over the course of his life, especially his journey through Alaska, he came across many complex issues. However, he always seemed to find solace in the text of great, progressive minds such as Thoreau and Emerson. Through the accounts of people who once knew McCandless or those found in his journal, the keys he led his short life by ultimately shaped his character, lifestyle, and who he strived to be. McCandless's lifestyle of having reduced dependence on property was demonstrated frequently throughout the book. When McCandless's body was discovered, his family had to retrieve his ashes and belongings from the coroner stationed in Fairbanks, Alaska in chapter 13. His belongings included a rifle, binoculars, fishing rod, a knife, his plant book that his journal was written in, and a camera with film. For having lived in the wilderness for months on end, he had very few belongings. It is clear that he reduced his dependence on property over time. This idea can be paralleled with the essay Walden, written by Thoreau (pg.406). Thoreau describes how living simply or deliberately alongside nature can cause someone to learn and feel things they would never discover otherwise in their lifetime. McCandless lived both with limited belongings and pushed himself to become “one with nature” per say during his time in the Alaskan wilderness. Not only did McCandless demonstrate love for nature, but

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