Walden Book Report By Henry David Thoreau

891 words - 4 pages

Have you ever taken a moment and just embraced the world around you for what it is? Most people do not have enough time in their busy schedules to slow down and absorb the atmosphere around them. This is the premises for Henry David Thoreau's Walden. Within these 300 pages, Thoreau delightfully makes his argument that in order for man to ever evolve as human beings, we must first simplify. Written in the years 1845-1847, Thoreau was observing a time period where society was ever changing and growing at an incredible rate. Believing that society was headed in the wrong direction all together, Thoreau made a personnel decision to do something about it. He left all his materialistic possessions behind, and made a great trek out to the shores of Walden Pond in Eastern Massachusetts, where he lived in his hand built cabin surrounded by woods. It is out in the woods away from civilization where Thoreau makes his claims about society, and embracing solitude.An anonymous writer in the Worcester Palladium had this to say about Thoreau views of society, "He shows us that life is too hard work now-a-days; that it grows harder and more perplexing the farther it advances from primitive simplicity."(Anonymous, 3). This quote rings true to Thoreau's ideology of the economy, as he constantly brings up the issue within his book. Although some of his thoughts are very paradoxical and offer some shrewd suggestions, many of them make sense in the rawest of form. He believed that materialistic possessions are evil, and we do not need so much industry in the world. At the same time, where did his gun come from that he hunts with, or the axe that he built his house from? Although conflicting, maybe the world does need to assert ourselves more effectively in order to be more enlightened. We all should spend more time reading books in the woods, as opposed to sitting in rush hour traffic. Yet, how did that book your reading in the woods gets published without a printing press of some sort? Thoreau believed that "We do not ride the railroad; it rides upon us" (Thoreau, 83), which is stating that we work so hard at making life easier, that after all is said and done, we exert more energy in making things more convenient, than we would if we never attempted to fix the problem in the first place. He uses the railroads to signify all the sweat, blood, and energy that humans "waste" on "unworthy" tasks, and believes all that energy could be focused on greater...

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