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Transcendentalism In Wall E Essay

1695 words - 7 pages

Transcendentalist views of bonding with nature and living without the luxuries of cell phones and microwaves are old fashion and difficult to connect with for modern day readers. The uncommon techniques may seem to be a mindset of the past; however, the theories of transcendentalists, such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, still reign in modern day. Although the message of the importance of nature is depicted through the 2008 Pixar film about robots rather than living in the solitude of the woods, the views of Emerson and Thoreau can still be seen in the movie Wall-e. Wall-e, an Earth loving robot, shows the values of protecting nature and straying away from conformity similar to the beliefs in the works of Emerson and Thoreau.
The film Wall-e takes place in the future after mankind has abandoned Earth due to its accumulation of garbage from the all-powerful superstore Buy N Large. Wall-E, the Waste Allocation Load Lifter – Earth Class robot, was sent along with other robots to rid Earth of waste and create a livable condition once again. Wall-e appears to be the only robot left as he has evolved to fix himself when a part goes wrong. His hobbies include collecting human belongings that interest him such as lighters, silverware, bowling pins and other odd objects that humans abandoned on Earth (00:05:55). His favorite collectable is the 1969 film Hello, Dolly! When Wall-e watches this film the viewer can see past Wall-e’s circuits and wheels as if he was programmed to have a heart. He shows true emotions when he admires the couple’s affection as if he would like that too (00:07:00). His spirits are lightened when he meets Eve, a modern day robot sent to find evidence of life on Earth (00:22:28). Through Eve the viewers see Wall-e’s childlike qualities, which according to Emerson is not a negative characteristic. Wall-e possesses childlike innocence, trustfulness and candor. He innately believes Eve is good although she tried to blow him up at first sight. The beauty Wall-e sees through his dusty lenses is due to his childlike aspect. He is able to feel the connection with nature unlike the adults because of his simple mind rather that the weighed down mind of the humans who are burdened with Earth’s rubbish state. Emerson valued this simple outlook because he believed it aided pupils in their intellect and understanding. Emerson states, “The sun illuminates only the eye of the man, but shines into the heart of the child” (216). He believed that although adults can see nature, they do not share the same appreciation of nature that children do. When children become adults they lose their connection with nature and become consumed by the materialistic world. Children, such as Wall-e, are capable of seeing the beauty in their surroundings because they do not become caught up in the advancement of commercialized items like adults.
Wall-e discovers a plant while he is searching through the piles of trash. He is intrigued by the plant and...

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