Into the Wild Theme Essay

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Greg DeMello January 11, 2011
Language Arts 8-2 Into The Wild Theme Essay

Through out the book, Chris is prompted to make many small decisions in order to determine how he will live the rest of his life. From the moment he decided to go onto the road from Virginia to the West Coast, then landing in Alaska, he made small mistakes due to ignorance to fine details. During the most part of the book, Christopher McCandless is struggling without himself knowing of it. Many people he sees and meets along the way have warned him about the dangers of traversing the wilderness, alone with very little supplies and experience. After journeying into the deep Alaskan wilderness, Chris's actions show that with ignorance to small details, suffering will soon follow.

The term ignorance has many meanings. By Merriam-Webster, it is defined as a "lack of knowledge, education, and awareness". Chris only had one of those, which was a education from Emory University, and high grades at that. He was smart enough to not reveal his true identity until a few days before death, in his journal. Chris went by the name of Alexander Supertramp to all the people he met on his way to The Stampede Trail in Healy, Alaska. His lack of knowledge about the wilderness and let along the country, led him to poison himself therefore leading him to a slow and painful death. His awareness also was a large contributing factor, because when the summer months came, the frozen river that he came to the bus on thawed, therefore making it impossible to pass. Additionally, if he had looked at his Alaska State Guide to the Wilderness map, he would have come across a State Rangers’ cabin only a few miles from the bus that he was living in.

One example of Alex's ignorance is depicted in his statement to his acquaintance, after he asked whether or not he had a hunting license:
"Hell, no," Alex scoffed. "How I feed myself is none of the government's...
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