Jon Krakauer in his novel “Into the Wild” writes a tale of a young man Chris McCandless, who resolves to venture into unknown Alaskan wild. He begins the novel by telling the reader how they found the body of Chris in the Alaskan wild, which marked his last contact with human kind. This ushers the reader into the life of Mccandless as events that led him into the wilderness and finally the cause of his death. He establishes theories and reasons that convinced Mccandless into the unknown journey.
Throughout the novel, I am able to discover some of the foolish decisions that McCandless takes that lead to his demise. A fool is someone, who takes an action without giving it a second thought and considering the consequences involved. Thus, this paper establishes some of textual evidence that shows that McCandless was a fool.
Firstly, Chris McCandless decides to take a folly action of venturing into the unknown, the Alaskan wild without any research on the wild. Furthermore, he did not take time to consider the resultant effects of going into the wilderness. Krakauer notes that he had one desire to "Invent an utterly new life for himself, one in which he would be free to wallow in unfiltered experience" (Krakauer, 22). Ultimately, he dies of starvation. He had hunger for adventure and was driven by his intrigues, hence made the folly decision without understanding the weight of matter involved.
Secondly, before venturing into the Alaskan wild, McCandless gave all his savings to charity, abandoned his car, burned all the cash he had in his wallet and resolved into his new form of life. He began his journey into unknown to be found dead only after four months in the wild. This is this greatest act of folly that one can commit in life. Despite the fact that he was a college graduate and from a well to do family, he demonstrated high degree of stupidity. Krakauer states that "Seemed like a kid who was looking for something, looking for something, just didn't know what it was"(Krakauer, 43). He was acting like a child, who had been newly introduced into this world. Moreover, the writer states that “"Allowing his life to be shaped by circumstances"(Krakauer, 29). Thus, by resolving to live his own life away from others, he was indeed acting like a fool.
Thirdly, Krakauer states that McCandless was misled by romantic novels from his favorite authors. Some of the writers whom he liked were Tolstory and Thoreau, who describe life as full of fantasies, something that he took serious and decided to experiment. The author states that "He learned to bury what money he had before entering a city, then recover it on the way out of town" (Krakauer, 37). This was not wise of him. Fiction novels cannot be used in the real world. They involve creations of the authors in their imaginations. Thus, he thought that Alaskan wild was the way the authors described in the writings.
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As a young boy, McCandless had a passion for climbing. Krakauer states that "The greater the risk, the greater the reward in most aspects of life," (Krakauer, 134). However, this particular adventure into the Alaska wild was not worthy taking alone. He had a passion for climbing the Devils Thumb, an icy mountain in the Alaska wilderness. His mind was set for doing everything alone, something that resulted in his death, in the desire to fulfill his passion. He had a desire to overcome the fight of climbing as Krakauer describes, “A trance-like state settles over you efforts; the climb becomes a clear-eyed dream" (Krakauer, 142). It is also an ignorance to plan for an unknown journey. One has to have prior preparation and sufficient information about the place he is about to go to ensure that he is safe.
McCandless folly led to his fatality. Alaskan local citizens described his action as an intention to leave the world for months without being sure that he was going to come back. In fact, they wrote a letter that read, “" Why would anyone intend to `live off the land for a few months, ignore Boy Scout rule number one: Be Prepared?"(Krakauer, 71). Everyone thought he had gone nuts. Indeed, all people saw it lethal to trend into the Alaskan wilderness without doing any research as well as lack of any form of preparation.
His pursuit of wilderness life was terminated by starvation. The author argues that his death was caused by folly and the risk involved in the wilderness. Living alone in the bush is definitely dangerous and less intriguing. Wild of Alaska is tough and requires prior preparation and research to endure the extreme weather. However, McCandless had various reasons for his journey, which according to me were all acts of foolishness. For instance, Krakauer argues that, “"McCandless went into the wilderness not primarily to ponder nature or world at large but, rather, to explore the inner country of his own soul" (Krakauer, 182).
In conclusion, it is evident from the above analysis that McCandless was a fool. His ignorance is proved by the actions he took that culminated to his ultimate death. He was led by his stupidity for adventure and the desire to live his own life in the wild away from mankind. Unfortunately, his uncontrollable desire was never fulfilled.
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