Walden - and - A week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers - and - Civil Disobedience - and - Life without Principle - and - Cape Cod - and - fragments from his Journals
by Thoreau, Henry David -- 1817-1862
orig. pub. by Tichnor and Fields, Boston - 1854       Bantam pub. NY, 1982 (Walden and other Writings by Henry David Thoreau) isbn 0-559--21012-2
Introduction and edited by Joseph Wood Krutch p. 1-23     the text of Walden p. 105-351     - Bibliography p.435-436 - - total volume has 436 p.
This physical book is bound with A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers - - Civil Disobedience - - Life Without Principle - - The Maine Woods - - Cape Cod - - The Journal
Henry D. Thoreau writes in a mixed style. He can go along with straight forward commentary, sometimes heading off in different directions and involving references to classical works and writers which are a way he shows off his Harvard education. Other times he waxes eloquent on the simple life and espouses a way of living simply and at a much slower pace than most human beings can manage. In fact I often found it irritating. Here is a man, living singly, with few if any obligations, offering advice when most of humanity is involved in the real business of being human... being married, raising a family, making some attempt to benefit the human condition. Other times his writing rings true, exposing the hubris of modern mankind.
One needs to note that Thoreau was a man of his times. Between the Revolutionary War and the Civil War. He was a man who loathed slavery. He was suspicious of modern conveniences, even the railroad. He also was a land surveryor and improved the family business - making pencils - including inventing better machinery to produce higher quality pencils.
In the book on his visit to the state of Maine he revealed his distaste of hunting purely for sport, though he considered hunting a good exercise good for young people. He was deeply interested in botany.
An interesting, and sometimes difficult read. - Read the works of Thoreau yourself, and get an understanding for the mind of people of that period of the history of United States.

~ 2015-08-08 ~

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