Into the Wild

It's pretty clear that the author has the agenda of presenting the sympathetic argument regarding Chris McCandless' choices in the telling of the tale. In the end, I guess I've decided that McCandless was both the careless narcissist and the adventurer with the high ideals. People are complicated and are different things to different people. I get the impression that the actions he took were necessary for his personal development and his sense of himself, but he seriously underestimated how important he was to his family, and how his actions effected them. There's a section in the end where Krakauer is confronted by Mrs McCandless' grief and he says her weeping, betrays a sense of loss so huge and irreparable that the mind balks at taking its measure. Such bereavement makes even the most eloquent apologia for high-risk activities ring fatuous and hollow. I can't help but feel that a mind like McCandless' is a rare and wondrous thing. Yes, he caused suffering and made stupid decisions, but who is to say what is or isn't important for another person, and of all the options of life available, what will be life changing for them. There's only one life and we all try to live it to the best of our abilities, in the end, I think that's what McCandless was trying to do, his death was an accident of poor planning. Had he lived, with time and maturity he might have come to understand his importance to other people, and the great responsibility that comes of being loved. Maybe he would have tempered his passions with reason and become a more balanced thinker and philosopher.

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