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The Tragic Hero Vs. Mccandless

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A tragic hero is an individual who possesses a fatal flaw in their character that will bring about their own destruction or suffering. Aristotle believed that “A man doesn't become a hero until he can see the root of his own downfall. (Aristotle #1)” This Ancient Greek philosopher also believed that each tragic hero has four characteristics. The first of these characteristics is that a tragic hero is born with either wisdom or high integrity, and in some cases both. Aristotle’s second characteristic is that they contain a fatal flaw in their character that may cause them to behave irrationally. The penultimate characteristic is that each hero will suffer a turnabout of fortune brought about by their own flaw in character. Finally, the last characteristic is that the tragic hero will find out that their own turnabout of fortune was brought about by their own actions. McCandless in into the wild is the ideal tragic hero mentioned by Aristotle. McCandless had everything in the world but he gave it up to live in the wilderness and through his own actions he paid the ultimate price. McCandless is seen by the world as a young man who left the corrupted society to embrace a journey only a few would dare. “That's what was great about him. He tried. Not many do. (Krakauer 96)” This journey ended up being the best time of his life and the fact that he attempted this wildlife adventure makes him look more like a daring hero than an idiotic teen.
McCandless is the ideal tragic hero because he was born with both intelligence and integrity. He has integrity because even though he was born into an upper class family, he ends up giving all his riches away for his “Great Alaskan adventure”. McCandless had no desire for luxuries and he did not bel...

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...h and out of options. In His last moments of life he realized that his actions brought him to his doom and that “HAPPINESS ONLY REAL WHEN SHARED. (Krakauer 189)” McCandless set out into the wild for the adventure of a lifetime, only to find that the feelings and experiences he gained are greatest when shared with someone.
Christopher McCandless is the ideal tragic hero because he had everything in the world but he gave it up to go on a two year trip into the wild and through his own actions he paid the ultimate price. McCandless had a goal to achieve in the wilderness but as Aristotle said “The tragic hero's powerful wish to achieve some goal inevitably encounters limits, usually those of human frailty.(Aristotle #2)”Although McCandless met his fate at the end of his journey the fact that he attempted this grand adventure makes him a hero rather than an imbecile.
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