The Foolish Christopher McCandless of Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer Essay

The Foolish Christopher McCandless of Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer Essay

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In 1990, when he was 22 years old, Christopher McCandless ventured out into the Alaska wilderness in search for true happiness, and 2 years later he suffered a tragic death. An aspiring writer, Jon Krakauer, found McCandless’ story fascinating and chose to dedicate 3 years of his life to write a novel about him. The book entitled “Into the Wild” tells the tale of Christopher McCandless, an ill prepared transcendentalist longing for philosophical enrichment, who naïvely, failed to consider the dangers of isolating himself from human society for such a long period of time. Though Christopher McCandless made a courageous attempt to separate himself from society, in order to achieve self-fulfillment, the stubborn nature of this reckless greenhorn led him to his unfortunate demise.
Christopher McCandless’ stubborn personality causes him to leave a loving home in order to start a new beginning as “ Alexander Supertramp, master of his own destiny”(Krakauer 23). He refuses to further educate himself with a law degree, instead taking a journey into the wild, leaving behind his mother, father and caring sister. Chris grew up as an intelligent individual excelling in almost everything he did. His parents supported him and often encouraged him in his endeavors. Unfortunately, and for clear reasons, Chris did not reciprocate his parents’ love, instead he creates an illusion of normality, causing his parents to believe that everything was fine, while he slowly drifted away from them both physically and emotionally. Chris “let them think they were right”, so they would begin to think that he was beginning to see “their side of things”, when in truth, he was merely waiting for the right time to completely “ knock them out of [h...


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...s “ happiness only real when shared”(189) in the novel Doctor Zhivago. These five words are evidence of Chris beginning to see the folly in his ways as he questions the benefit of the solitude that he so desperately sought out. Chris’ impulsive escapade into the Alaskan wilderness and his lack of preparation and experience shows his irresponsibilities that inevitably led him to his death.
Christopher McCandless was a very motivated individual with the desire and drive to achieve his goals, but his lack of stable relationships and his unpreparedness resulted in his death. Christopher McCandless embodies the famous idiom, fools rush in where angels fear to tread, written by Alexander Pope in his Essay on Criticism, where Chris McCandless is the fool rushing into the wild.



Works Cited


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

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The Foolish Christopher McCandless of Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer Essay

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