Nobody downloaded yet

Thoreau's Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism - Essay Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Name Instructor Class May 3, 2012 Thoreau’s Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism In 1845, Thoreau was twenty-seven years old when he decided to break free from the demands of modern cosmopolitan life. He built a one-room cabin on Emerson’s land in the woods, which was located at the shoreline of Walden Pond, less than two miles from Concord…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER91.2% of users find it useful
Thoreaus Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample
"Thoreau's Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism"

Download file to see previous pages During this time, he used as much of his possible free for thinking and studying. He examined people and nature more than he read books, although he brought several well-selected volumes to his Walden home. In Walden, Thoreau argues that people can reach transcendentalism through nature, which will ultimately produce the most important basic freedoms for human individuals. One of the first important freedoms that Thoreau gained in Walden is freedom from materialism. Living through and with nature can enable people to leave their materialistic lives behind. Thoreau realizes that without the need for material possessions, people can become happier with simpler lives, because a simpler life enables them to have more time to enjoy their time. Thoreau says: “The morning wind forever blows, the poem of creation is uninterrupted; but few are the ears that hear it. Olympus is but the outside of the earth everywhere” (390). Living in Walden opens opportunities for reflection, which are the origins of poetry. It allows people to criticize themselves and the society they live in, which will not be possible when living in a materialistic world. Without self and social criticism, people will learn to live with “lies,” such as the lie of freedom, where freedom is not possible when people are focused on making money to respond to their material needs. In the chapter “Economy,” Thoreau explores the drawbacks of the capitalistic market. He says: “Most men, even in this comparatively free country, through mere ignorance and mistake, are so occupied with the factitious cares and superfluously coarse labors of life that its finer fruits cannot be plucked by them” (327). He stresses that because of capitalism, labor is undervalued, as well as the ability of people to live independent lives. Thoreau shows through this novel that only by having a simple life through nature can people live simply, and living simply is related to living happily. People are happiest, it seems, when they own their labors and since they have no masters, they own their time. Alexander replicates the same life that Thoreau has. He relishes the understanding of Thoreauvian lesson that a person can be “richer than the richest now are” (Thoreau 354) while living in very modest circumstances. For Alexander, this gives him “a calm trust in the future” (Thoreau 450), since he realizes that a “fancy house is not a necessary part of living a happy and meaningful life” (Alexander 141). Like Thoreau, Alexander understands that a simple life is the key to a happy and peaceful life. Thoreau believes that without the demands of modern life, people can be free to develop themselves as individuals. Buckner believes that the most important message of Walden is “to call people to freedom as individuals.” She stresses: “One looks at nature in order to learn about oneself; one simplifies one’s life in order to have time to develop the self fully; one must honor one’s uniqueness if one is to know full self-realization” (Buckner 4). Thoreau recommends to others that they should live simpler lives for them to be happier. A simpler life away from material needs exemplifies the idea of peace. Nature itself is filled with peace, which is the symbol for inner peace of mind. Thoreau cries out for a simplified life: ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Thoreau's Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism Essay”, n.d.)
Thoreau's Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism Essay. Retrieved from
(Thoreau'S Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism Essay)
Thoreau'S Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism Essay.
“Thoreau'S Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism Essay”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document
Walden by Henry Thoreau
...that he presents a travel book where the already decided circumscribed borders are the generic designation that starts faltering thereby adopting individual isolationism and national isolationism. The idea of travel of Thoreau is more fundamentally localized. The Pond referred to in the book is an epitome of mental topography in which the author has undergone the self realization and redefinition. The book becomes a travelogue for Thoreau himself (Poetzsch, 388-389). Oleson is of the opinion that Walden is the “declaration of the personal independence” by the author, an expression of the transcendentalism which is ultimately a work of utopian manifesto....
7 Pages(1750 words)Essay
Henry David Thoreau: Walden the form of a question, “Why should I feel lonely?” He poses this question and challenges people into his line of thought his mission was one for mankind, and that he was to find secrets of the woods since he was a representative of every man out there (Mersand 79). As representatives of the human race, poets are also said to have conversations with nature. In Walden, specifically in the topic ‘From the Bean-Field’, Thoreau details his interactions with plants. He poses the question, “What shall I learn of beans and beans of me?” He was determined to know beans. He even details his curious and intimate acquaintances with various kinds of weeds. He clearly gives the impression that he is not just on a...
5 Pages(1250 words)Essay
Walden & Thoreau
...? Walden & Thoreau Walden & Thoreau So, what do you make of all this? Thoreau postulate reality on chronological realism imbued inenvironmental, situational/circumstantial and time dynamism rather than on the inherent social-cultural/traditional cognizant of human being. This conclusion is drawn from his phrase “only that day dawns to which we are awake…” which realizes a dynamic and continuous cognizant experiences rather than rigid and inherent experiences from social-cultural/traditional background. Is he on to something? Yes! Thoreau is critic of the rigid and inherent social-cultural rationalization of life experiences, which he...
7 Pages(1750 words)Book Report/Review
Henry David Thoreau: Walden
...Walden: Lessons Learnt from Nature. Henry David Thoreau built a rough cabin in the wilderness of Walden Pond, which served as a Nature Retreat for the inhabitants of Concorde in the 1840’s. He spent two years there, living a solitary life devoted to writing and communion with nature. Thoreau demonstrates in WaldenTranscendentalism's preoccupation with the details of nature, which seemed to encapsulate divine glory in microcosmic form” (Finseth, 15). Thoreau’s Walden represents his quest to discover the true meaning of life. Thoreau states the purpose of this...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay
Henry David Thoreau and Walden
...Henry David Thoreau focused his writings on how man was affected by nature. He wrote from an autobiographical point of view revealing his own internal conflict with mans struggle against nature. In his novel Walden, he reveals his mental and spiritual beliefs through a personal journey in which he strives to become in tune with nature, working not to be victorious over these universal forces, but rather to participate in harmony with nature, in tern exposing love and truth. By using nature as an entity to explain certain truths of human existence, he stresses the essential role that nature plays in society and the importance of man's relationship to nature. People have spent centuries pondering the relationship between citizens... the...
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay
Transcendentalism in Thoreaus Walden
...Transcendentalism in Thoreau's Walden The Transcendentalist Movement was a reaction against eighteenth century rationalism and manifestation of the general humanitarian trend of nineteenth century thought. The movement was based on a fundamental belief in the unity of the world and God. The soul of each individual was thought to be identical with the world - a microcosm of the world itself. The doctrine of self-reliance and individualism developed through the belief in the identification of the individual soul with God. Transcendentalism was intimately connected with Concord, a small New England village, 32 kilometers west of Boston. Concord was the...
9 Pages(2250 words)Essay
English - Walden by Henry David Thoreau on his own terms and explore his philosophy of self-reliance, simple living and intellectual growth, Thoreau built a primitive cabin on the shore of Walden Pond, situated about a mile from Concord, and lived there from 1845 – 1847: a period of two years and two months. In 1854, Thoreau published ‘Walden,’ an account of his life during that time (Kifer, 2002). ‘Walden’ throbs with Thoreau’s impassioned love for Nature and his exhortation to follow a simple lifestyle, free from the bond of materialism. Walden is Thoreau’s spiritual quest for self-expression. Thoreau urges each man to...
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay
Transcendentalism in Walden by Henry David Thoreau
... Transcendentalism in Walden by Henry David Thoreau “What everybody echoes or in silence passes by as true to-day mayturn out to be falsehood to-morrow, mere smoke of opinion, which some had trusted for a cloud that would sprinkle fertilizing rain on their fields” (Thoreau, 7). One of the basic principles in transcendentalism is considering worry as a form of foolishness. What can be considered today as valuable may be considered insignificant tomorrow. It is not just Thoreau who exemplified that way of thinking but also Ralph Waldo Emerson via the statement, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” (Reuben, ch. 4). Advices may be given by adults to the youths however there is not much of credibility in them... of the...
6 Pages(1500 words)Research Paper
...that life had to offer: “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived” (Thoreau 69). He was in pursuit of the truth, and this pursuit is spiritual, This pursuit too has an implicit regard for the centrality of the individuals perceiving the universe in the spiritual quest. God and spirit can be properly perceived through the lens of an individual meeting life with wide awareness and deliberation, in the woods in the case of Thoreau (Morin; Simpson). Conclusion Transcendentalism posits that the center of...
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay
Walden - A Treatise on Transcendentalism
...Walden - A Treatise on Transcendentalism Henry David Thoreau delivered his magnum opus to America which he baptized with the title Walden. The book is all about Thoreau’s experience in a cabin located near the Walden Pond surrounded by woodlands which is owned by his affiliate and teacher Ralph Waldo Emerson in nearby Massachusetts. The book was written to illustrate how Thoreau detached himself from the society for the objective of finding a bias-free understanding of it. In the cabin where he lived on for two years, he practiced with humanly motivation the life of an ascetic. His existence in the simple abode was...
2 Pages(500 words)Term Paper
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.
Let us find you another Essay on topic Thoreau's Walden: Freedom through Transcendentalism for FREE!
Contact Us