Analysis Of Henry David Thoreau 's ' Civil Disobedience ' Essay

Analysis Of Henry David Thoreau 's ' Civil Disobedience ' Essay

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Henry David Thoreau starts to become dysfunctional with the government when he’s detained and spends a night in jail. He decides to write an essay titled “Civil Disobedience” where he criticizes the government for certain criteria and says which areas can be improved at. Thoreau’s areas of improvement are centered through the ideas of ethics and the relationship between the individual and the state.
Thoreau wrote three parts in this essay; each part having the same agenda but in several of different explanations. In part one, paragraph one of his essay, he immediately talks about how the government is at its best when not governing itself and not involved with the people’s lives. Thoreau writes “a government is good when it doesn’t govern at all.” He also uses diction such as “expedient” and “inexpedient” when describing his beliefs about and towards the government. He mentions that the military is a representation of the government with them forcing such ideas presented by the government, mocking it completely different from what it should exactly be. Thoreau believes that if the people are more involved, committed, and attached with the government that it could become better.
Staying in the same part of his essay, Thoreau starts to develop the relationship between the individual being the American citizens and the state being the American government. He suggests that the government itself has reached prosperity by losing its integrity, causing the citizens to start losing faith and questioning their actions. The metaphor that Thoreau says involves a “wooden gun” that has the representation of the people going to war with it as their choice of weapon; in other words it’s useless. The parallel structure that Thoreau uses that...


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...ind of respect for the people but also wants the people to peaceful and not make any chaotic decisions with or towards the government.
Henry David Thoreau’s essay “Civil Disobedience” criticizes the government for certain criteria says which areas need improvement. The area of improvements are centered through the ideas of the relationship between the individual and the government and ethics. There are multiple occurrences throughout the essay where these ideas are presented and how to make the government better overall. Even though times has change, there has been significant effects on the country where the government has done something positive or negative. Thoreau doesn’t want the government to be horrendous and become absolute dust; he just wants the government to take action for whatever necessity so it doesn’t come to a point where people start doubting it.

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