Self Reliance By Ralph Waldo Emerson

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“Self-Reliance”: Chapter 7 Self-Reliance was an essay written by an American transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson. Throughout his life, Emerson kept detailed journals of his thoughts and actions, and he looked back at them as a source for Self-Reliance. The essay mainly talks about the importance of self-reliance, self-reliance and the individual, and self-reliance with society. As a whole it promotes self-reliance as an ideal and contrasts it with various modes of dependence or conformity. Throughout Into the Wild, Chris McCandless shows that he is very independent and does not conform to society. Which is why he leaves his home and travels to be closer to nature. The thoughts and actions of Chris McCandless shows many transcendentalist ideals. For example, when Chris was speaking to Mary Westerberg she got the impression that, “He was hungry to learn about things” (67). For Self-Reliance, Emerson states, “No kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him till…”. These quotes in different ways shed light how both Emerson and McCandless wanted to learn new things. The only way for them to “absorb” the information was for them to be closer to nature. McCandless was also said to be “Unlike most of us, he was the sort of person who insisted on living out his beliefs” (67). When reading this quote it can be depicted that McCandless is the type of person where if he puts his mind to something he will see it
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