Spider Essay - Thoreau

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The spider in its attic makes an unusual and enticing allegory for Thoreau. The spider is able to create the world he wants to live in, with the only limitations being the capacity of it’s imagination. Thoreau compares his idea to the spider using it as an allegory to explain his ideas of life and his aspired to be a non-conformist. Only a non-conformist, with his own dreams and imagination, not deterred by society, can truly peruse life how he wants to live it. He idealizes the spider; its image of the world is purely its own. In Walden, Thoreau compares himself to the common spider; because, like the spider, his perception of the world is solely of his. He uses the spider to emphasize the point that it doesn’t matter who you are, your world is as big and as vast as your imagination.

Thoreau prides himself on being a non-conformist and wrote many pieces on expressing how true life can only be lived by that of a non-conformist. Non-conformists peruse their dreams despite the depression society places on individuals. “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.” (chapter 18, Walden) Because non-conformist are not swayed by the pressures of society, they march to the beat of their own drum and are free to follow their dreams.

Thoreau admires the spider because its imagination is allowed to go wild and create and shape it’s views of the world and live in it however it pleases. “If I were confinede to a corner of a garret all my days, like a spider, the world would be just as large to me while I had my thoughts about me.” (917) His world is only limited by his imagination which is one of the traits Thoreau admires most in life and strives to follow the spiders unconscious philosophy on life.

The small, confined space, that is the spiders home, can not put limitations on its perception of the world. The spider is free to create a world more beautiful than anything society could form a mold for....
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