How Is Chris Mccandless Justified In Into The Wild

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Into The Wild: Justifying Chris McCandless
“Chris was fearless…He didn’t think the odds applied to him. We were always trying to pull him back from the edge,” was how Walt McCandless described his ambiguous son before he abandoned everything his father had given him and left for a fresh nomadic life (qtd. in Krakauer 109). In 1990, a young man by the name of Chris McCandless graduated, with honors, from Emory University. However, Chris was not the typical college student, for he shied away from social norms that encompass materialism, vanity, dependency and government influence. After graduation, he proceeded to give away twenty-four thousand dollars’ worth of savings to charity, abandon his car and possessions, change his name, and invent …show more content…

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived” is an excerpt from “Walden,” one of the many texts that had influence on McCandless(Thoreau). Through his various annotations and markings on texts such as “Walden,” readers are able to identify McCandless’ overall purpose for shunning society, as clearly indicated in this excerpt, which was to reach some sort of epiphany or realization about his identity and life in general. Towards the end of Chris’ time spent in Alaska, he actually does reach an epiphany, that “…happiness [is] only real when shared…” (qtd. in Krakauer 189). This statement, written by McCandless, indicates that perhaps he had become more forgiving, tender-hearted, and finally appreciated the value of relationships. Henceforth, by no means was McCandless’ journey pointless nor his death intentional, rather it led him to appreciate and live life to its highest potential. McCandless’ death, furthermore, was not a suicide because he was enthralled by the daring manner of youth. In Into the Wild, John Krakauer compares McCandless’ death to his near death experience in a similar situation and at a young age, “At that stage of my youth, death remained… abstract… I was stirred by dark mystery of mortality…” (Krakauer 155). At a certain stage of youth, one develops sense that they are indivisible, that death is only a concept, or “abstract,” as Krakauer put it. McCandless was merely a young daredevil who adored the challenge that surviving in nature, with little supplies, offered. Alexander Supertramp’s death was a definite

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