Examples Of Transcendentalism In Into The Wild

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Was Chris McCandless a true transcendentalist? Transcendentalism is a system developed by Immanuel Kant, based on the idea that, in order to understand the nature of reality, one must first examine and analyze the reasoning process that governs the nature of experience. Influenced by romanticism, Platonism, and Kantian philosophy, it taught that divinity pervades all nature and humanity, and its members held progressive views on feminism and communal living. Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau were central figures. In Jon Krakauer’s novel, Into the Wild, McCandless is viewed as a transcendentalist. The characteristics of transcendentalism is individual vs society and the connection between human and nature. A subject of Into the Wild is individual vs society because Chris McCandless tends to desire to chase freedom and be alone rather than with people. In the last letter ever received from Everett Ruess, to his brother Waldo on November 11th, 1934. He explains that he wants to live in isolation. “As to when I shall visit civilization, it will not be soon, I think. I have not tired of the wilderness; rather I enjoy its beauty and the vagrant life I lead, more keenly all the time”( 87). Growing up, McCandless would go in the outdoors with his family and go rock climbing. After his family would be done, Chris would go off on his own even when his father would tell him no. In the song Freedom by Akon, there is a lyric which relates to McCandless

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