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The Imperfect Chris McCandless of Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer Essay

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You can write novels, poems, and short stories about it, but you’ll never truly understand the beauty of life until you experience it for yourself, until you immerse yourself in it. Every person has their own set of wants, needs, and desires. But it isn’t until you go out and do the things that you’ve imagined, that you really discover what you love. Every person has a unique mind; every person has the capacity to share different views. If you asked every person in the entire world what they believe the meaning of life is, you would receive several answers. Many would be different, but most would say something to the effect of “living a happy, healthy life.” Because we’re all so different, our own definitions of happiness are bound to differ from the next person. Christopher Mccandless' definition of happiness would have been simple. He wanted to find himself, who he really was deep down. In Into the Wild(1997) by Jon Krakauer, Mccandless didn't want to be the person his parents or society expected him to be, he instead wanted the rawness of life itself; and in order to achieve this, he left everything behind and ventured from place to place, eventually ending in Alaska. In chapter 17, Mccandless is compared to naval officer Sir John Franklin because some claim McCandless "lacked a requisite humility" and "possessed insufficient respect for the land." With these claims in consideration, McCandless is a young man who is arrogant because he is reckless and stubborn; however, he is also humble because he is gentle and kind.
Chris McCandless is very stubborn. Chris McCandless fails to see reality and that is one of his tragic flaws this is what ultimately leads to his demise. Chris McCandless doesn’t accept help or...


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...zy, he was not ‘lost’, seeking attention, unintelligent, or suicidal. “McCandless went into the wilderness not primarily to ponder nature or the world at large, but rather, to explore the inner country of his own soul.” (Krakauer, 183)
McCandless was not a transcendent saint, nor was he a bumbling, arrogant dis-respecter of nature, and to press him into service as an emblem of anything is a mistake. If we examine the life of another and don’t see them as a fellow-person—if we don’t look into a dead face and see our own–we’re missing something important. Chris McCandless was deeply kind and supremely selfish; tremendously brave and jaw-droppingly foolish; impressively competent and staggeringly inept; that is to say, he was hewn from the same crooked timber as the rest of us.



Work Cited

Krakauer, Jon. Into the Wild. New York: Anchor Books, 1997. Print.


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