Transcendentalism In Into The Wild By Chris Mccandless Essay example

Transcendentalism In Into The Wild By Chris Mccandless Essay example

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In the movie Into the Wild Chris McCandless, the main character, held many of the same transcendentalist ideals that influential transcendentalists such as Henry David Thoreau held; however, Chris is a prime example of someone who missed the point by a long shot. In accordance to the transcendentalist beliefs, Chris decided that after going to college he would go out into the world by himself instead of going into the workforce. From there, he went on a long and exhausting journey to eventually end up in Alaska. He did this based on his gut feeling at the time, something that Thoreau urged people to follow. As with many transcendentalists, Chris valued his individuality and broke off all ties to society that he had during his journey. Chris isolated himself so that he could be closer with nature and learn the truth about himself and the world around him. Chris McCandless did hold many of the qualities of being an upstanding transcendentalist, but he took everything too far.
In Thoreau’s works Walden, he advertised the notion of leaving the world behind to find our true selves and Chris did just that. Chris was a intelligent man who could have gone on to have seemingly whatever he wanted, but instead he chose to distance himself from society as a whole. Chris was rather cruel though, he left his entire family behind without even a simple goodbye. One can see just how devastating that was throughout the movie as Chris’s sister is the narrator and often spoke longingly about his brother. Originally this was something that a person such as Thoreau may commend as Thoreau stated in Walden that “society is commonly too cheap.” Thoreau believed that men and women interacted with each other so frequently that all interactions had lost th...


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...ived. The fact that his tale was even told is surprising, but it would have been more inspiring has he actually survived. People wouldn’t follow in his footsteps and ultimately die in Alaska because he could reprimand those who tried is he was alive. Chris failed to be a transcendentalist because he did not live long enough to become one.
Chris McCandless was a terrible transcendentalist because he wasn’t one. He was around too many people and then none at all, he ran to try to find himself and to hide from his problems, he wrote his story, but he died before he could inspire anyone. Left and right Chris did whatever he wanted and excused it by claiming he was a transcendentalist. While he did not like material goods or society, that did not make him a transcendentalist because he just simply wasn’t one. No one could make Chris into what he wasn’t, including himself.

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