Analysis Of Into The Wild, By Jon Krakauer

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For centuries humankind has been drawn to nature. Ancient civilizations saw nature as divine, the Greek and Roman gods all reflect some aspect of the natural world. Even today, people leave civilization to live in nature. Chris McCandless’s journey, leaving civilization behind, contained within the book Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer, reflects this. There are countless television shows, books, songs, poems and art that reflect Earth’s natural appeal. What makes nature so captivating to mankind? Nature offers freedom, beauty, and the allure of the unknown. Men throughout time have striven to find freedom in society, it is what the United States of America was founded on. But true freedom cannot be found amongst civilization, it must be obtained…show more content…
The human brain is wired to seek knowledge, to discover what is unknown. And this is exactly what nature provides. Frederick Jackson Turner, an American historian and harvard professor, had a theory that the American democracy was not perpetuated by the desire for freedom or independence, but for the allure of the unknown of nature contained within the American frontier. As he put it "American democracy was born of no theorist's dream; it was not carried in the Susan Constant to Virginia, nor in the Mayflower to Plymouth. It came out of the American forest, and it gained new strength each time it touched a new frontier," (Turner 226) This “Frontier Theory” meant that the success of the American governing system relies of a frontier of sorts. But in this day and age, where is this American frontier? It’s not the west, it’s not Alaska, it could be argued that there is no longer an unknown in America. This is the problem Chris McCandless faced in Krakauer’s book Into The Wild. He was searching for the unknown, it had a draw for him, but it is not easy to find. He achieved this by neglecting to take a map with him on his adventure. In the end this led to his demise, and the premise that he was foolhardy and incompetent. But in his eyes this was the only way to find what he was looking for, and it was worth the risks. With modern technology nature has lost its anonymity, but the unknown can still be found within
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