Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Lit. Analysis #3 Into The Wild 10/22/13

                                        Into The Wild                                              by: Jon Krakauer

    Into The Wild written by Jon Krakauer tells the life story of a young man named Christopher McCandless whom decides one day that he wants to give up everything he has such as his car, giving away the last of his money, etc. to explore and go to Alaska as his appointed destination. McCandless meets a vast amount of people along his adventure who are amazed by what McCandless tells them about his mission while some questioned his sanity. Over the course of his journey McCandless kept a journal with him to document every sigh he saw, people he met and most importantly the things he felt in that moment. This is the documented work of McCandless's story before he passed away in August of 1992.

    The story of Christopher McCandless was originally posted in an outdoor magazine article which then gained great recognition thus eventually becoming a book. The author chose to write Into The Wild because many wanted to know more about McCandless's intentions and why he did what he did in order to get to the Stampede Trail in Alaska. The reason why I decided to read this book because I to was curious as to what McCandless actually went through along with what he was thinking at the time. After reading a couple pages I couldn't put this book down for I felt that I could relate to what McCandless was saying when he was describing certain aspects of his life along with the wilderness scenes. Just like McCandless, I to have had to live off of the bare essentials for 2 months in the woods so to imagine that this man went a whole year living on very little completely takes my breath away. I found everything in this book to be 100 % believable for when McCandless was describing the cold and how his feet hurt from walking so much I to in the moment was able to relate and empathize with that of physical and mental exhaustion. The descriptions of what McCandless had to do in order to survive was very easy to imagine for it was written very detailed.

    For Krakauer to sit down and take the time out of his day to write about Christopher McCandless's story says a lot about his character for he greatly admired McCandless and his courage/strength to do what he did before starvation took over and killed him. The author himself seems like a very content, adventurous and observant man for his tone throughout the book shows that he picked up on every little detail and tracked every route McCandless hiked on upon arriving to his destination. 3 people that stood out to me the most out of this book was of course Christopher McCandless, Carine McCandless ( his sister) and Billie McCandless ( his mother). Through reading the text, it was said that Chris and his step sister Carine were very close in their relationship for they were around the same age and got along very well. Just like McCandless I to have a sister whom I am very close with so I was able to relate to this family dynamic. Billie, Christopher's mother was another character I chose to write about for she was a very down to earth woman who cared very much for her son and was shocked by his actions of just leaving one day to hit the road and never come back. The last character was Christopher because Chris seemed like a very genuine, down to earth, handsome and educated young man who lived for adventure and thrill. He was always the kind of person to never sit around and wallow in sorrow but instead wanted to help others and see what else was out there in the world. Throughout the text, you are able to see that McCandless was a very static character for he didn't change once he hit the road and he didn't change his ways once he reached his destination. As a result, my lasting impression of this character is that he is very strong,courageous and bold in his actions. I look up to Christopher McCandless for everything he went through leading up to his death. This man deserves great recognition for most of us can't handle the emotional/physical toll isolation and lack of wood,comfort,etc. takes on us after a period of time.

    The style of writing that the author chose to use when writing this book was a very journalistic approach along with lengthy descriptions and details describing the route McCandless traveled along with his day to day activities and the things he saw. It was neat to find that McCandless's information was organized and separate from that of Krakauer's written work. Not a lot of fore shadowing was used however their was a lot of imagery and descriptions used in order to evoke different emotions throughout the readers. After reading this book I was able to see that the author of this book was very amazed by the action and risks McCandless took therefore he wanted to share that with the public in detail. Many of the resources used to write this non fiction book consisted of journal entries from McCandless himself, pictures McCandless took while on his adventure and images of maps drawn out/tracked to show how far McCandless really traveled. By having all of this evidence displayed in his book, this shows that this event really happened in reality for it gives the reader proof and makes them believe more so in the story behind Christopher McCandless.

The first idea that I will remember for a long time after reading this book would be that you shouldn't worry so much about what others think of you and or your actions for then you will go through the motion of life never feeling personally satisfied for you are always trying to please those that will never be content with your decisions. For example, when McCandless decided that he wanted to live in the woods for a period of time he didn't base his decisions off of what his mother, father, sister,etc. thought he just acted on impulse. The second thing that I will remember is that people will forever do insane things and get recognition for it because a lot of us wouldn't dare put ourselves in harms way, we would prefer to leave that to those that don't mind taking big chances/risks.

   After reading this book majority of people learn about McCandless not just as a person but also his adventures that unfolded prior to death. This can be proven in the sense that if you were to go up to someone who has read this book they would be able to tell you what the overall jist of the story is about and recite some facts,information,etc. (that they came across in the book) about Christopher McCandless.

                                                   Passages from Into The Wild

  • "Don't settle down and sit in one place. Move around, be nomadic, make each day a new horizon. You are still going to live a long time, Ron, and it would be a shame if you did not take the opportunity to revolutionize your life and move into an entirely new realm of experience."

  • “So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.” 

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