Christopher McCandless, a 29-year-old dreamer, went on the journey of a lifetime to involve himself with nature and being truly independent. He had lived a life of privilege, made amazing grades in school, and even went to school at Emory College, getting degrees in both history and anthropology. Even though he seemed to have everything good going for him, it’s not the life he wanted. McCandless decides after law school to go deep into the “wild”, with no map, no resources. All he kept was a small journal and camera in which he captured and recorded all of his experiences in, allowing people for the rest of time to read and learn about his journey in his book titled Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer. This impulsive decision that McCandless made would soon cost him his life, and most people would see him as being crazy for it. A man named Shaun Callarman, for example, believed that he “ had no Common sense. . . he was just plain crazy.” I disagree with this statement, however, and believe that Christopher had a very transcendentalist view on life,agreeing with most all of the great Henry David Thoreau and his ideals, but just made a few careless mistakes that would have been the difference between life and death.
In Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, he focuses on one main person, Chris McCandless. Krakauer explains most of Chris's life and even, at times, puts his own input into the pages of this book. Chris McCandless (a.k.a Alexander Supertramp) was from Chesapeake Beach, Maryland. Chris had a father, Walt McCandless, a mother, Billie Mccandless, and a younger sister, Carine. Chris's obsession with nature and high-risk activities was believed to start when "Walt took Billie and his children from both marriages to climb Longs Peak in Colorado." According to Walt, there was a point where he was getting tired and wanted to turn around but, Chris wanted to keep going all the way to the top. It has been said that the reason high-risk activities attract young men is because it gives them the sensation and adrenaline rush they are looking for.
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”- Henry David Thoreau. Transcendentalism is an American philosophy that revolves around self-reliance and independence, commonly in nature, a Transcendentalist wants to find the true meaning in life. I believe that Chris McCandless was a Transcendentalist because he was able to leave his whole life behind and take on a minimalist lifestyle while having a strong relationship with god. However, I believe that I am not a Transcendentalist, but simply an adventurer. I had the opportunity to go to Mexico and visit the Yucatan rainforest and this lead me to be able to explore nature and feel the peaceful impact it can have on someone 's life.
McCandless’s self-reliance is a big part of identifying him as transcendentalist. In the short story, “Death of an Innocent”, Chris says, “I've decided that I'm going to live this life for some time to come. The freedom and simple beauty of it is just too good to pass up.” McCandless feels that life should not be wasted doing what you do not love, and shows this by traveling and living off the land every chance he gets. Transcendentalists take in all of what nature has to give them by becoming one with it; like McCandless does throughout the story. By relying on himself instead of others, Chris managed to embody one of the most important pillars of transcendentalism; to only focus on what he needs, not on what society tells him is
Being materialistic isn’t such a bad thing, but some people take it to the extreme by either wanting too many things or having less than enough to survive. In the book “Into the Wild” Chris McCandless does not feel that materialism is important. When Chris tries to be less materialistic he takes it to the extreme and tries to live off of the wilderness with only a 10 lb bag of rice and a .22 caliber rifle. In the book “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakaur, Chris McCandless is very anti-materialistic and gives away all of his things, proving that having a lot of possessions was not something he valued.
Into the Wild is a personal tale of Chris McCandless’ journey as he runs away from home to try and live in the Alaskan wilderness. The book follows the story through the eyes of the author as he investigates the mysteriousness of Chris’ life through the eyes of those he came in contact with and the journals left behind. However like every book adapted into movie there are slight differences and characterizations throughout the story that aren’t expressed deeply enough or seen in a different light. Into the Wild is no different.
Chris McCandless abandoned the modern world and chose the wild because he believed that he could improve himself through living in the wild, and found the true happiness of the life. McCandless abandoned his wealthy family because of his complicated relationship with his father, and he was ashamed with his father’s adultery. Therefore, McCandless believed that human relationship was not the only thing that forms happiness, instead a man’s connection with the nature brings joy as well. He also believed the habitual lifestyle was not what people were meant to do, and people shouldn't have more possessions than what they need. For this reason, McCandless traveled with little effects. In addition, McCandless thought he could found the solution to his frustration with the adultery of his father, and found the true happiness for his life through escaping into the wild.
Into The Wild portrays a man who went on a fatal unforgettable journey through the alaska wilderness. Chris McCandless was a man with great courage and the ability to live on his own made him more of a hero going on his fatal journey. Many would say he was foolish or not thinking right, but that is not the case. The case here is simply a man with courage wanting to fulfill is beliefs through his journey.
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
Henry David Thoreau is one of the primary promoters of the transcendentalist movement and has been inspiring people to take on the transcendentalist lifestyle ever since the mid 1800’s. Mccandless was an admirer of Henry’s philosophy but he wasn’t as fully immersed in his work and ideals as Thoreau was to his own. His intentions were not as closely aligned to the movement as Thoreau’s and the difference between these icons are clearly visible.
Into the wild, is a book by Jon Krakauer that later got turned into a film by Sean Penn, it follows the life of Christopher McCandless, who graduated from Emory University as a top student and athlete with wealthy pushing parents. Instead of continuing his life as a working man of society and taking his offers at top law schools, he decides to ultimately completely disconnect himself from society and instead tries to find his own meaning of life in the wild. Shaun Callarman says “ I think that Chris McCandless was bright and ignorant at the same time.” and i really agree with him on that because
Into The Wild was a tremendous story which Shaun Callarman did not have many positive things to say about Chris McCandless, the main character. He went on this adventure to find out what life is all about in his own eyes. He wanted to see how different living in the wild really was compared to society because he was not satisfied with his living arrangements and household. Shaun’s quote says that he thinks “Chris McCandless was bright and ignorant at the same time. He had no common sense, and he had no business going into Alaska with his Romantic silliness. He made a lot of mistakes based on arrogance. I don’t admire him at all for his courage nor his noble ideas. Really, I think he was just plain crazy,” shows that Shaun believes Chris had no common sense in his doing for leaving society for the wild. I agree with Callarman’s position of thinking “ he had no common sense” and that he was “bright and Ignorant” because Chris thinks he did not have much to offer in his society, ditched all his possessions to take a trip into the Alaskan Wilderness and did not have much common sense or survival skills.
Romanticism was a movement during the late 18th century that encouraged imagination, exploration, individualism, and emotion. From it derived Transcendentalism, one of the first movements to originate from America and which bore the first American philosophers. These movements are often present in many pieces of American literature and this is no exception in Jon Krakauer’s novel Into the Wild. The historic account retells the story of a young man named Chris McCandless, who adopts the pseudonym Alexander Supertramp and takes to the road, only to die of starvation in Alaska. On the surface it appears to be cautionary tale, but Krakauer literally retraces McCandless’ steps, talking to the people who Chris spoke with and even traveling to Chris’ final resting place.
In the 19th and 20th century transcendentalism was a new and exciting topic that caused tremendous controversy. In the novel Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, Chris McCandless was a man with a very unique character. In more detailed words Chris McCandless was a transcendentalist. His actions and moods played a big part in his life, from beginning to end. He was a transcendentalist because of his self-reliance, confidence and non-conformity. Even some people thought that McCandless was mentally unstable that was not the case.
During the Transcendentalist movement, Henry David Thoreau was a leading transcendentalist whose work focused mainly on nature and adventure. Walden, or Life in the Woods is an exceptional example of a story based on adventure. In Thoreau’s account of his life at Walden pond, he first states, “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” Through this quote Thoreau explains that he was tired of the complexity of normal life and desired to go on an adventure to live simply. Additionally, Thoreau states, “I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life…,” which again reveals his motivation for new life by adventure and simplicity. Finally, as Thoreau concludes his account he states, “I left the woods