Chris McCandles is unique, inspiring, and a cautionary tale all at once. His journey is one that is as unbeliavable as it saddening and there’s a lot to be learned from people like McCandles, people who are the groundbreakers and visionarys of our time. Chris didn’t become the person he was without inspiration and some of the people who inspired Chris to be the person he was through their like-tales and similar struggles are some of the best athours and philosiphers to have lived. Among them I have chosen Leo Tolstoy, Mark Twain, and Jack London; these people share similarities with McCandles through their struggles, beliefs, jobs, decisions, and up-bringings. They are ultimately the puzzle pieces that make up Chris McCandles, and they are the friends that travelled with him on his journey into the wild.
I’ve decided to start my comparissons with a person McCandless worshipped, Jack London.
The largest similarities among London and Chris seem to be in their passion, intelligence and individualism, though, that is few among the many like attributes they share. “When the tramps organized a march across America to demand jobs in 1894, London hit the road with them-only to be arrested at Niagara Falls for ‘vagrancy’” (Jack). We see a little bit of the free spirited McCandless in London here, as well as their similar indifference to the law. The fact that Jack London was a tramp also really brings the image of him being a great influence in Chris’ life into full view. The picketing and impassioned speeches they both gave on subject s which they were concerned about shows their zeal for justice. “He enrolled in another academy-only to be thrown out for completing the entire two-year curriculum in four months, embarrassingly outclassing all the rich kids”(Jack). Here we see the the overwhelming intelligence of both men, Chris graduated from Emory University with a 3.72 GPA, And London finishing a large curriculum in an amazingly short amount of time. The intelligence they both shared, created in them, as It often does in extremely intelligent people, a kind of resentment of their peers and society; this led both to become the ‘lone wolfs’ we now know them as. London writes to a friend “I grow sometimes, almost to hate the mass, to sneer at dreams of reform” (Jack). The last tragic comparisson is that both died alone, Chris on a bus in alaska far from friends and family, and London in his home overdosed on morphine. Both men let tultimately were killed by their greatest passions, McCandless by the wild, and London from his political aspirations, as the article states “He resigned from the Socialist Party…Cut off from his great redeeming cause, he was dead within a year” (Jack). Coincidently McCandles death is described quite well by the message of Londons book The Call of the Wild, “…you can’t escape nature; it will reclaim us all, no matter how civilized we seem” (Jack).
The next author, Mark Twain, shares many belief systems and many...