Comparing and Contrasting McCandless and Emerson

Decent Essays
American transcendentalism was a vital movement in philosophy and literature that grew over time. One person who stood out from american transcendentalism was, Ralph Waldo Emerson. He expressed his ideas and values through one of his works, Nature. There he broadcasted the relationships between God, man, and nature. Someone who would be seen in this movement would be, Chris McCandless as a transcendentalist. The novel,, Into the Wild, shares the decisions Chris made during his nomadic life style. The lives of Chris McCandless and Ralph Waldo Emerson as exhibited in the novel, Into the Wild and the essay, Nature fulfill as examples of the contrasts of each man’s journey through life and transcendentalism.

Chris McCandless made the bold decision to travel throughout North America and living off the barest of essentials. He left behind his materialistic life, for what he felt was the beauty of nature. Displaying exactly why Emerson and McCandless shared the same feelings toward nature in general. By Chris rejecting society, he cut off everything that was once important to him. Chris left his family without even a hint of where he was going. Chris comes off as foolish and that he bit off more than he could chew.

The author of Into the Wild, Jon Krakauer shows the mystery of the novel and tries to unravel it throughout the story. He believes that Chris may have been aware of a long line of characters from American literature who rejected society and its values. Chris took
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