Henry David Thoreau Essays

Henry David Thoreau Essays-90
In the twenty-first century, scholars have begun to take Thoreau more seriously as a philosopher. Tauber focuses on Thoreau as a moral thinker, and the essays in , a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the study of Thoreau’s life and texts; an example is Edward F.

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The train explicitly represents great power, technological innovation, the rule of commerce, and cultural progress, but it also carries the connotation of the displacement of animals, the destruction of the natural world, and the pernicious powers of the market.

For Thoreau, therefore, “progress” was an ambiguous term; while the majority of Americans could honor this word, Thoreau recognized the constraints of capitalist democracy, and he was concerned about where a market-based culture was going to lead the nation and just how harmful “progress” could be.

Despite his serious efforts to be an accomplished writer, Thoreau’s writings, generally, were not warmly received.

In 1849, he had to publish , which was published in 1854, was more warmly received, but generally throughout his life, people did not see Thoreau as an accomplished author.

It was not until years later, around the beginning of the twentieth century, when people started to appreciate Thoreau more, and Houghton Mifflin Co.

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helped to solidify his reputation in 1906 when the company published his books, essays, and journals, which totaled twenty volumes.Their fingers, from excessive toil, are too clumsy and tremble too much for that.Actually, the laboring man has not leisure for a true integrity day by day; he cannot afford to sustain the manliest relations to men; his labor would be depreciated in the market. (Thoreau 6) America’s market society was generating a level of artificiality in life and cultivating a desire for the accumulation of goods.Thoreau gravitated toward Stoic philosophy, Hindu and Buddhist insights, and European idealism and romanticism; he was an eclectic thinker weaving together various philosophies to formulate his own unique strain of American thought.This article helps readers understand Thoreau’s philosophical inclinations and his contributions to American philosophy that allow him to stand as an early innovator of American thought and literature, and it does so based on Thoreau’s concept of wildness and his penchant to preserve wildness in all he encountered.For two years, two months, and two days from July 4, 1845 to September 6, 1847, Thoreau dedicated his life to frugality and writing the only two books published during his lifetime: : “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.I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear, nor did I wish to practice resignation, unless it was quite necessary. He partially withdrew from society, so he could experience life more directly, being able to confront it on its simplest terms.Since 1906, Thoreau’s reputation as a literary figure has grown, and he has become an important intellectual figure for environmental movements.The Transcendentalist movement, which was an intellectual, social, and religious movement of loosely gathered, like-minded individuals in and around Boston and Concord, helped to cultivate Thoreau’s intellectual pursuits.In a society of technological advancement and the increased use of machines, human beings were beginning to become more mechanized.They were machines guided by the timetable of the market and robotic laborers doing unsatisfying jobs.


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