Essay about Transcendentalist Mccandless

1016 Words Apr 4th, 2013 5 Pages
Transcendentalist McCandless What is transcendentalism? How is Christopher J. McCandless a transcendentalist? Transcendentalism is a philosophy, and a way of life. It consists of being a non-conformist, becoming one with nature, and rejecting materialism. Throughout Jon Krakauer’s novel, Into The Wild, McCandless happens to achieve all of the above. “Whoso would be a man, must be a non-conformist” (Emerson). He defied society, lived in the wild, and never cared about “things”. He existed off the land in Alaska, the west coast, and even Mexico. McCandless did not want anything else in life but happiness; he found this in the wilderness. As Emerson states in Self-Reliance, “society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood …show more content…
McCandless first rejects materialism by burning all the cash he had left after giving away his savings. He did not wish to be able to use money as a way to help him. “He changed his name, gave the entire balance of a twenty-four-thousand-dollar savings account to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, [and] burned all the cash in his wallet” (Author’s Note). Any materialistic person would consider him crazy for his bizarre actions. Then, he turns down a brand new car his parents offered to buy him. He believed his car to be in perfect condition. McCandless states, “I’ve told them a million times that I have the best car in the world… yet they ignore what I say and think I’d actually accept a new car from them” (21). McCandless has visibly made his point that he does not want any “things”. McCandless then goes on to decline Jim Gallien’s offer to take his watch. He did not want to know the time nor where he was. Gallien states that wished not, “to know what time it is. I don’t want to know what day it is or where I am” (7). McCandless wants to be as free as he can, having a watch will give him too much unnecessary information. A typical materialist has reasons to believe McCandless as outlandish for his discarding of his money, and not wanting a free watch or car. McCandless did not worry

Related Documents