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Christopher McCandless Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Chris Mccandless’ Death “Into the Wild”

Many people have come to the conclusion that Chris McCandless’ untimely death was a result of his arrogant nature or a possible psychological disorder. However, his death was caused by a simple mistake, his lack of geographical knowledge, and his desire to find himself. When Krakauer’s moving article in Outside magazine was published, copious amounts of hate mail was received regarding McCandless’ cause of death. Initially it was believed that he mistook two similar plants, the wild potato and the toxic wild sweet pea, then accidentally poisoned himself when consuming their seeds. Alaskan residents dubbed McCandless as “ignorant” and “unprepared” for supposedly confusing the similar plants. After further research Krakauer discovered that McCandless was poisoned by the wild potato plant’s…

Sparknotes Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

This chapter introduces one of the primary motifs of Into the Wild, that of documents. Because the book’s subject, Christopher McCandless, has died before author Jon Krakauer can meet him, Krakauer must rely on the testimony of the people McCandless encountered in order to stitch together the story of the young man’s journey — and especially on the documents McCandless left behind. The first of these documents is McCandless’s S.O.S. note. Others will include his journals, the notes he made in the books he read, graffiti he scratched into various surfaces, and photos he took of himself. To these Krakauer will add maps of the places McCandless visited, relevant quotations from a wide variety of authors, and even a brief…

Walt McCandless from Into the Wild

Although, Chris’s father Walt McCandless and Ronald Franz spent a lot of time with him, both offered him different level of support. Walt McCandless was stubborn and controlling parent. The relationship between him and Chris was complicated. Walt was a hard worker and self-made man. Chris was raised in the comfortable middle class family. So, he could get anything he wanted, but not happiness. Chris wasn’t happy with the fact that Walt was living double-life (121). Discovering that, Chris did not confront his anger to his father, but, he chose to make a secret of his dark knowledge and express his rage by divorcing them as his parents (Jon 64). From of the book, the author emphasis on that relationship…

Chris McCandless

Who was Chris McCandless? Some say that he is a legend and others say that he was nothing more than a boy who threw away his future. Is the only one to blame for his own death? McCandless was the type of kid who always questioned things; he desired to know more but refused to work for the answers. In elementary school, McCandless was placed in accelerated classes but because he was so stubborn he refused to listen to the teachers and do the extra work. All in hopes that he would convince his teachers he was not smart and he would be taken out of the accelerated classes. McCandless rarely planned or prepared for the future, causing him to…

Chris McCandless and Emerson’s work “Self-Reliance”

In 1841 Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote his famous essay “Self-Reliance”. This stated his belief in the importance of being self-reliant and outlined the steps necessary to become independent. Over 250 years later Chris McCandless entered the Alaskan wilderness embodying most of the principles that Emerson highlights. Indeed, Chris is almost a perfect example of Emerson’s self-reliant being. Most importantly, he is not afraid to take risks and he follows his soul. The one area where he partially lacks Emersonian principles is in speaking his mind. As early as high school Chris strived for independence. In the summer after his senior year of high school he packed up his car and headed out alone on an expedition around America. His parents…

“How to Tell a True War Story,” by Tim O’Brien

In the essay, “How to Tell a True War Story,” Tim O’Brien tells several stories of war to illustrate to his readers the criteria for truth in storytelling. O’Brien offers his readers a guide to telling and determining war stories that are true, for the author, true does not necessarily mean actual or real. Instead, O’Brien tells us what a true war story is, but his requirements are not always clear precise—a true war story “never seems to end,” (O’Brien 273) “embarrasses you,” (270) “are contradictory,” (275) and have an “uncompromising allegiance to obscenity and evil” (270)—they are defined and given context by the author through the telling of his own accounts. The essayist Jon Krakauer offers up his own…