Essay about Freedom in ivil Disobedience and Economy by Henry David Thoreau

Essay about Freedom in ivil Disobedience and Economy by Henry David Thoreau

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When it comes to the topic of how Henry David Thoreau chooses the audience for his texts, many agree that the reasoning involved the writer’s longing for achieving results rather than convincing an audience. When this agreement usually ends, however, is the question of why Thoreau ignores people who support the Mexican American War and slavery and instead focuses on those who protest against those issues. His writing philosophy in the essays “Civil Disobedience” and “Economy” shows his favouritism towards the idea that individuals need freedom of exercising their conscience and that this leads to success. His aims in targeting the unhappy and out speak their discontent shows potential that challenges slavery and the war. Consequently, this paper will address how Thoreau’s philosophy targets the discontented minority that voice their complaints and exercise their conscience.
Firstly, his philosophy reflects his audience choice. His philosophy translates to targeting those who voice their opinions against current events surrounding the war and slavery. Thoreau targets the discounted and argues that since his opposition gains nothing from changing current order, he refuses to waste time on then. To his standards, the conformed fail in exercising their conscience and are thus useless in achieving change. He refuses to target “those who find their encouragement and inspiration in precisely the present contagion of things, and inspiration in precisely the present condition of things” (“Economy” Par. 21). The writer refuses wasting time changing the minds of those favouring slavery and the war because he finds them unworthy of obtaining results. In other words, he believes that success is faster by targeting those who voice disconte...


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...eeds to be challenged and according to the writer, the only way of achieving this is through the potential of the discontent. The complaints go against order and have the possibility of organizing and changing traditions. If he targeted the conformed, the efforts will result unsuccessful because changing the mind is harder that structuring an argument. The conformed have no potential to challenge order and changing their mind proves harder than organizing the minority. Thoreau’s philosophy of achieving change through the potential of the minority thus translates to his choice of audience.



Works Cited

Thoreau, Henry D. “Economy.” Walden, Civil Disobedience and Other Writings. New York: W.W Norton and Company, 2008. Print.
Thoreau, Henry D. “Civil Disobedience.” Walden, Civil Disobedience and Other Writings. New York: W.W Norton and Company, 2008. Print.

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