Christopher Mccandless Transcendentalism Analysis

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Time and time again, society is influenced the many works of transcendentalist philosophers. Transcendentalism is the philosophical and literary movement that highlights themes of nature and spirituality while going against society and materialism. Christopher McCandless was in intelligent young man who believed in prospering through nature and the breach from the norms of society. He spent two years traipsing around the country before he ultimately starved to death in Alaska. McCandless walks his pilgrimage out through the words of many famous transcendentalist thinkers, some being Ralph Waldo Emerson And Henry David Thoreau. McCandless’s guiding philosophy in his journey is transcendentalism is shown through his belief in nonconformism and anti-materialism.
First, Christopher McCandless believes in the concept of non-conformity, a major component of the transcendentalist philosophy. Ralph Waldo Emerson writes in his essay, Self Reliance, that, “Whoso would be a man, must be a nonconformist . . . Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind” (Emerson 15). Individuality and freedom of choice is the key to one’s life; moreover, imitation of others leads to destruction of self and inventiveness. McCandless pursues his own path of expression in multiple ways, one being his decision to alter the persona he was given at birth. “ . . . [McCandless intends] to invent an utterly new life for himself . . . To symbolize complete severance from his previous life, he [adopts] a new name . . . Alexander Supertramp” (Krakauer
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McCandless heavily pursued to words of Emerson and Thoreau to best accomplish his desires of individuality and spiritualism. This guiding philosophy leads McCandless along in his journey to self exploration. McCandless may not have live a perfect life by some standards, but he pursues a one based on his own

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