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Into the Wild

Into the wild, written in 1996 by John Krakauer, is a nonfiction book that revolves around the life of a lad, Chris McCandless in Alaska. The author uses the character, Chris, to drive in the theme of seeking self-actualization by remaining in seclusion. McCandless was a close minded person since he never even consulted anyone about his moves and deeds. For instance, he kept mom about his graduation at the Emory University from his family and opted to leave to his destination in the wilderness. “Chris headed West in his second hand Datsun car model. His family, not even his favorite sister, Carine, had any idea he had gone” such actions considerably reveal McCandless as a person who lacked wisdom and was uncooperative. In the same chapter, the author involves himself in the character and talks about his past experiences in the wilderness that resulted for the reason that of his domineering father, making him seek refuge in a strange environment the wilderness. Those readers who detest with the actions of McCandless argue depicts him an opportunistic individual is erroneous since he transforms persons he meets in his escapades. For example, 80 year old leather worker life was shaped from an encounter with McCandless. This, therefore, absolves the ideology that he was a hope-driven character. Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer has left many readers with bitter feelings towards the main character, Chris McCandless. These readers find nothing to admire about McCandless and his internal search for truth. Specifically, these critics see four Character flaws that prevent Chris from being an object affection and sympathy.

First, McCandless death appeared to be his own fault because of ill-preparedness, fascinating hazards in the wilderness, for instance, he plunged himself into the Alaskan wilderness and climbed a mountain that had not been ascended the Devil’s Thumb on a path never used previously. He is easily a risk taker, by opting to climb a mountain without taking precautions. Second, they believe, that was because of the different lifestyles in the two contrasting environment’s, his former life at Alaska to that in the wilderness a clear separation of the two environs. For instance, he refuses the advice he was given by Gallien to go back to Alaska since he was not properly prepared for the life outside the town. This shows his haughtiness and ill-bred personality that cost his life since if he had heard Gallien’s piece of advice he would possibly not have died. An effort by Gallien to buy McCandless decent clothing for the journey was thwarted by his egotism. McCandless broadly refused Gallien’s offer to buy him more clothing to equip himself with the new environment he was heading to. Moreover, McCandless is to blame for his deeds, emanating from a well up family his actions of moving to live in solitude in the wilderness. After several incidences, McCandless decisively opts to go back to civilization. However, different climatic conditions delay his migration. McCandless was close minded person thus resulting in his death since he never had a map to guide him into the wilderness and relied on his conscience and knowledge, For instance, if he was well equipped with a map, he would have established that it was impossible to cross the river Teklanika and saved his own life. If he had a map he would have known it was not impossible to cross the River Teklanika and he might have survived” The wilderness expedition by McCandless was due to his love for nature and also as an avenue to comfort his own soul.


However, to some McCandless was the real definition of a reliable and mentally upright individual, for instance, his former employer Westerberg details his account with McCandless as a fruitful one due to his hardworking self. After meeting with Westerberg, McCandless, days later he comes and promised to work; McCandless resurfaces back in search for employment by Westerberg. This gesture indicates that McCandless was actually painstaking. And last, to these readers, Chris fails to protect himself and engages in criminal activities to the extent of owning a handgun, a weapon of mass destruction, epitomized the bad personality since such weapons are owned by bunch of hooligans, therefore by having such a weapon in his possession; it arguably signifies that he was not a “straight” individual, signifies his criminal involvement. In addition, when working at Crazy Ernie’s workplace he steals a bicycle, this shows that he is not morally upright although the author makes us understand that the action was occasioned by the fact that he was not paid his dues by his supposed employer. All said, his morality is in question and such actions can’t be shelved to prevent his rights from being abused. Such actions make the readers emphasize with his death. Admirers of Chris McCandless are correct about only one point: it is true that Chris is an idealistic individual with high moral standards. On several occasions, Chris demonstrates his idealism. McCandless background life was ironical was not logical. This portrays him as a disillusioned individual with the activities in the society. For instance, it is the revelation that his father had sired a child without their knowledge that he opts to reduce his anger in the backwoods. His behavior in Arizona is not the only time the readers sees McCandless demonstrate his selfishness. Admirers of Chris McCandless are wrong to claim that Chris was a selfless young man, who cared more for others than he did for himself. Several of McCandless actions documented in Into the Wild Illustrate that he was a self-centered individual. In addition, when his innocent misdeeds turn to be irreversible it takes precedence in the media industry about his irresponsible cowardly actions. Earlier revelations show that he had a death wish which is quite a daunting task than to face the problems of the wilderness. In his book, Krakauer shows McCandless uncompromising pilgrimage out of the dimness, and the danger, harsh conditions, and denial sought by this unfathomable young man are illuminated with a rare comprehension and not a small amount of over-romanticizing. Attention-grabbing, tear-jerking, Into the Wild is a tour de force.


The theme in the book, into the wild, widely employs the Man’s role in Nature. In this regard, Krakauer uses McCandless to promulgate this school of thought. Jack London and Henry David Thoreau are among McCandless favorite authors and their writings influence his actions. Nature is an unpredictable living thing, turning from friendly ally to cruel enemy in the blink of an eye. In conclusion, John Krakauer, a piece of work delves into details the life and times of McCandless, serving as a learning experience for individuals with such characteristics. The plot flows logically and the intertwined plots help in minimization of boredom. Including himself in the story brings life to the otherwise detailed writing style and long paperwork. The author cum journalist inclusion of anecdotes on other young adventurer’s unfortunate escapades enables the readers to easily relate to the experiences of Chris McCandless. Although life is all about sacrifices, McCandless experience that any right thinking individual would like to go through. The book highlights the life of McCandless and serves as a learning experience for those individuals that have such behaviors portrayed by the McCandless. For instance, advice is optimum for any person involving in activities. If he had earlier enough informed his family about his presumed undertaking, his life would have been saved. In a nutshell, having passed in similar experiences Krakauer was the ideal person to write this book. At great lengths, I concur with the explanations I the book and I recommend anyone who would be interested in true-fiction to read the book.

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