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Thoreau was a student of Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Walls is too well versed in Thoreau’s life to accept his own often contradictory pronouncements or his semi-fictional first-person narrator as necessarily factual. She teases out nuances and implications, but without unfounded speculation. And often she sums up a trait with a sly image, such as the final clause of this sentence: “Moving to Walden Pond thus had a double purpose: it offered a writer’s retreat, where Thoreau could follow his calling as spiritual seeker, philosopher, and poet; and it offered a public stage on which he could dramatize his one-person revolution in consciousness, making his protest a form of performance art.”
Henry David Thoreau lived in the mid-nineteenth century during turbulent times in America. He said he was born "in the nick of time" in Concord, Massachusetts, during the flowering of America when the transcendental movement was taking root and when the anti-slavery movement was rapidly gaining momentum. His contemporaries and neighbors were Nathaniel Hawthorne, Bronson Alcott, Margaret Fuller, and his mentor, Ralph Waldo Emerson.
A Review of Walden Published Around
The Walden Woods Project's Thoreau Institute Library holds more than 60,000 items that include books, manuscripts, periodicals, art, music, maps, pamphlets, correspondence, and personal histories. It provides the most comprehensive body of Thoreau-related material available in one place.
As Emerson’s essay details, self-reliance can be spiritual as well as economic, and Thoreau follows Emerson in exploring the higher dimensions of individualism. In Transcendentalist thought the self is the absolute center of reality; everything external is an emanation of the self that takes its reality from our inner selves. Self-reliance thus refers not just to paying one’s own bills, but also more philosophically to the way the natural world and humankind rely on the self to exist. This duality explains the connection between Thoreau the accountant and Thoreau the poet, and shows why the man who is so interested in pinching pennies is the same man who exults lyrically over a partridge or a winter sky. They are both products of self-reliance, since the economizing that allows Thoreau to live on Walden Pond also allows him to feel one with nature, to feel as though it is part of his own soul.
Compare Walden to Thoreau's buddy's essays on nature.
One of America's most famous writers, Henry David Thoreau is remembered for his philosophical and naturalist writings. He was born and raised in Concord, Massachusetts, along with his older siblings John and Helen and younger sister Sophia. His father operated a local pencil factory, and his mother rented out parts of the family's home to boarders.
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Walden by Henry David Thoreau
Walden, by Henry David Thoreau is written in first person about the events and ideas that came to the author during his time living at Walden Pond in the eighteen hundreds. Henry David Thoreau was a poet and a philosopher who lived a life of simplicity in order to make a direct connection between people, God, and nature. He viewed knowledge as an "intuitive force rather than a set of learned, logical proofs." His writing in focused on many different themes, including the relationship between light and dark, the ideas and importance of nature, the meaning of progress, the importance of detail, and the relationship between the mind and body. He also developed many ideas concerning knowing yourself, living simply and deliberately, and .
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It was in 1845 he made the now famous experiment of Walden.
And when we begin to realize “the infinite extentof our relations” (Walden, VIII), we can see that evenwhat does not at first seem to be good for us may have somepositive value when considered from a broader perspective.
Lucy Jackson Brown was the sister-in-law of Ralph Waldo Emerson.
And the entireenvironment, the “living earth” itself, has something likea life of its own, containing but not reducible to the bioticexistence of animals and plants (Walden, XVII).
to see long excerpts from “Henry David Thoreau” at Google Books.
When we perceive sights, sounds, andtextures, we are not standing as disembodied consciousness apart froma world of inanimate mechanisms; rather, we are sentient beingsimmersed in the sensory world, learning the “essential facts oflife” only through “the perpetual instilling and drenchingof the reality that surrounds us” (Walden, II).
Walden is now looked upon as a created work of art.
If it should continue so long as to cause the seeds to rot inthe ground and destroy the potatoes in the low lands, it would stillbe good for the grass on the uplands, and, being good for the grass,it would be good for me” (Walden, V).
Major essays by Henry David Thoreau
Accordingly, he seeks “to be alwayson the alert to find God in nature” (Journal, 9/7/51),and to hear “the language which all things and events speakwithout metaphor” (Walden, IV).
Civil Disobedience (Thoreau) - Wikipedia
Walden has been admired by a largerworld audience than any other book written by an American author,and—whether or not it ought to be called a work ofphilosophy—it contains a substantial amount of philosophicalcontent, which deserves to be better appreciated than it has been.
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