Into The Wild

Powerful Essays
Into the Wild

Sometimes a character may be pushed over the edge by our materialistic society to discover his/her true roots, which can only be found by going back to nature where monetary status was not important. Chris McCandless leaves all his possessions and begins a trek across the Western United States, which eventually brings him to the place of his demise-Alaska. Jon Krakauer makes you feel like you are with Chris on his journey and uses exerts from various authors such as Thoreau, London, and Tolstoy, as well as flashbacks and narrative pace and even is able to parallel the adventures of Chris to his own life as a young man in his novel Into the Wild. Krakauer educates himself of McCandless’ story by talking to the people that knew Chris the best. These people were not only his family but the people he met on the roads of his travels- they are the ones who became his road family.

McCandless, an intelligent child to say the least, was frustrated with orders by anyone. He wanted to do things his way or no way and he does this throughout his life. Whether it was getting an F in physics because he refused to write lab reports a certain way (an F was something that was never on McCandless report card) or not listening to advice from his parents to the extreme of leaving society to go into the wilderness, McCandless definitely was not a follower. His parents were told by one of his teachers at an early age that Chris "marched to the beat of his own drummer". Chris never lost his ability to do things the way he wanted and when he wanted to do them. After receiving his diploma from Emory in 1990 he set off on a two-year escapade that would eventually end his life but in my opinion, if Chris could start over he would probably not do things much differently. I think he would still donate his $25,000 to an organization, leave his car in the woods, burn the remainder of his money, and hitch-hiked across the United States. The only thing he might do differently is finding a way not to starve to death at the end of the novel.

In the beginning of each chapter, Krakauer includes one or two exerts from various authors of nature such as Thoreau, Tolstoy, or London. Once in a while he even includes postcards that Chris had sent to some of the people he met along his journey, which show what he was feeling throughout the trip. Some of t...

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...both found ways to escape the restrictions that were put on them by society. Krakauer found his outlet by writing in outdoor magazines and by writing novels. He was able to survive his trips but he was close to death a couple times also. Once he decided to climb a mountain that had never been climbed before called Devils Thumb. Just like Chris he refused to give up and after much adversity he finally conquered his goal and reached the top of the mountain. Chris never gave up any of his dreams. He traveled when people told him not to, he went into the wild when people told him it was too dangerous, he lived life to the fullest no matter what anyone said. I think the author is envious of this and that is why he decided to write a novel on Chris after writing an article on him in a magazine first.

Chris McCandless or Alexander Supertramp either name cannot describe the incredible person that he was. He left on a trip that would change his life forever but it also would change the lives of his family, the people he met, and the author. Chris wanted to separate himself from society but instead he brought people closer to him by just acting natural and living out his dream.
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