Henry David Thoreau's Resistance To Civil Government

Improved Essays
Henry David Thoreau was an American author, philosopher, professor, naturalist, transcendentalist and historian. He is known as one of the best American authors for his great ideas. During his life, Thoreau’s writings were not so significant. He fought for the abolition of slavery in United States of America in 19th Century. People who claimed Africans’ slavery thought that they did not have souls. In their view, Africans are some merchandise. Thoreau’s most famous writings are “Walden” and “Civil Disobedience”. The essay "Resistance to Civil Government" or "Civil Disobedience" contains pronounced ideas which had remained in history. Henry David Thoreau fought to improve civil laws. He had not agreed to pay useless taxes. …show more content…
He was one of the greatest and most moral men America has produced. At the time of the abolition of slavery movement, he wrote his famous essay "On the Duty of Civil Disobedience". He went to gaol for the sake of his principles and suffering humanity. His essay has, therefore, been sanctified by suffering. Moreover, it is written for all time. Its incisive logic is unanswerable.” (Gandhi, M. K. "For Passive Resisters", Indian Opinion, 26 October 1907). The thoughts of Thoreau inspired very much Gandhi and were an example for him. For obtains Indians’ rights, Mahatma Gandhi put his freedom and his life in danger. He taught his Indians that they must to fight for them rights, but without violence. He advised that everyone need not keep to nonviolence, especially if it were used as a cover for cowardice, saying, "where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence." (Gandhi, Rajmohan (2006) pp. 2, 8, 269). The Indians do not have to obey British’s laws and to not respect them. Thoreau guided his people to not pay British taxes, especially salt’s tax. The idea of “civil disobedience” belongs to Thoreau. Henry David Thoreau’s ideas had an important role of the India’s history. Mahatma Gandhi was inspired by him very much. “Civil disobedience” had big results in the Indian case. British authorities cancelled racial laws; they recognized immigrants’ rights and accepted the marriages made in Hinduism and

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    The second reason William Lloyd Garrison was one of the most influential American journalist in the anti-slavery movement is he help lead the abolitionist movement in writing and action. His leadership was based on his paternal status in the abolitionist movement. The abolitionist speakers kept Garrison’s earliest copies of The Liberator as relics. He protested the US government when a slave was done wrong. Finally he founded the American Antislavery Society witch focused on achieving abolition.…

    • 874 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Mahatma Gandhi brought freedom to India by introducing his own politics thoughts that he has once created. Throughout his beloved speech, Gandhi established many responses to the British government for the freedom that India deserves. Gandhi quickly became a spiritual and political leader in the late 20th century. He then expanded and supported his own political party of the nonviolence movement that many Indians participated in. His movement was strongly affected by the British government, since the British was upset on India’s political right.…

    • 1300 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    It was launched in 1920, it “demonstrated to Britain that it was futile to rule a society where a collective unwillingness to be ruled existed” (Gandhi). This act headed by Gandhi is protecting the people of India’s human rights because they don’t want to be governed by an outside force, where they have the willpower to do it themselves. This movement came from Mahatma’s free will to protect his rights and those of his fellow Hindu-Muslims. Similarly, Antigone protects her deceased brother’s rights by burying him while the government denied it because he was a traitor. When the soldiers found the one who buried Polyneices, Antigone get into an argument over whether it was right for her to bury or not.…

    • 1128 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    We made it clear to the said government that we would never bow to its outrageous laws…” This helps the document fit the theme civil disobedience because Gandhi and the people of South Africa didn’t put up with the laws and peacefully protested against them. If Gandhi and the people that were protesting with him were really mad at the government then they could have violently protested towards the government, but they didn’t, they stayed calm and protested peacefully. A second quote that helps the document fit the theme civil disobedience is “So long as it is your endeavor to control us with justice and love we will let you do so. But if you wish to strike at us from behind we cannot permit it.” This quote helps the document fit the theme civil disobedience because if the government treats them wrongly, they will protest. They protested peacefully, which makes it civil disobedience, which makes this document fit the theme civil disobedience.…

    • 1119 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Brown was remarkable, for besides oration and documentary reports he also produced a novel, European travel book, plays, several historical studies, and reflective memoirs. He spoke up against slavery even though everyone was for slavery. “William Wells Brown’s commitment to the struggle for freedom and equality for the blacks was a consuming passion that found expression, not alone in effort to affect his goals through legislation and political activity.” The main problem was that 20th-century American culture accommodated only one 19th-­century black man, a spot already taken by the monumental, best-selling Frederick Douglass. Another problem was theoretical: Farrison published his biography before the flowering of two other fields crucial to a full appreciation of Brown’s public life — the history of the book and performance art. “He expressed himself in the idiom of literature.” “He was hired by the American Anti-Slavery Society; he worked closely with famous abolitionists including William Lloyd Garrison and Wendell Phillips to help explore the field of African American literature and speech.” The Narrative of William W. Brown: A Fugitive, written by himself, is his most acclaimed novel that describes his emotional life as a slave.…

    • 1413 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    A good example is the slavery that black people in America suffered from before and even after the independence. However, slavery was an important issue that the founding fathers struggled to solve. Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were the most two who stood against slavery by writing, speaking, or negotiating.…

    • 912 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Different from some other rulers, Mahatma taught his follower to prove to British that they deserve the independence and not obtaining it by force nor violence. He once vowed o not take advantage from his opponents. By the way Indians started their non-violent protest, British tried…

    • 1368 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Caste system prevents the uplift and incorporation of the aboriginal’s tribes: Ambedkar states that, Schedule Tribes lives in a deplorable world even without access to the fruits of modernity. He further says that, unlike Christian missionaries, Hindu’s never tried to civilize tribes rather classified them as criminals. If Hindu’s sole aim is to preserve his caste and safeguard the racial purity then how Hindu’s accommodate and cultivate sense of fellow human being feeling! However Nehru's Panchsheel for Tribal Development was an effort to integrate the tribes into main stream India. A reply to Gandhi by…

    • 1139 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Great Essays

    Opposition To Slavery

    • 1799 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Free black communities were also hugely important in the African-American fight for freedom. An example of these influential figures is Benjamin Banneker, a free black man who was well-educated and famously penned a letter opposing slavery to Thomas Jefferson, United States Secretary of State and owner of mass amounts of slaves. In this letter Banneker points out the inconsistencies in Jefferson’s ideals by using his own rhetoric to prove that slavery did not align with the morals that the United States independence was founded on. In this letter, Banneker cites Jefferson’s famous word that ‘all men are created equal and argues to Jefferson that “it is the indispensible duty of those, who maintain for themselves the rights of human nature, and who possess the obligations of Christianity, to extend their power and influence to the relief of every part of the human race, from whatever burden or oppression they may unjustly labor under” (Primary Source Investigator). This argument is tremendously strong because it uses the exact sentiments that were used to successfully gain independence from Great Britain.…

    • 1799 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    It seems from the text that both authors agree on the fact that Western colonizers use brute force to gain control over underdeveloped countries as colonies; however, they differ significantly on the solution to colonial violence. According to Gandhi, means and ends do not necessarily justify each other. Since Gandhi disapproves of brute force as a means to take over a country, he does not agree with using brute force as a way to fight back. Otherwise, the Indian people would get exactly what the British people get, which is against humanity and not at all desirable. However, Fanon takes on the idea of “a tooth for a tooth”, and claimed that since the colonizers establish their superiority through violence, we will regain our equality through the same mechanism.…

    • 849 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays