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Henry David Thoreau and Walden - Essay Example
Henry David Thoreau focused his writings on how man was affected by nature. He wrote from an autobiographical point of view revealing his own internal conflict with mans struggle against nature. In his novel Walden, he reveals his mental and spiritual beliefs through a personal journey in which he strives to become in tune with nature, working not to be victorious over these universal forces, but rather to participate in harmony with nature, in tern exposing love and truth…
Thoreau introduced an idea of man as an individual, rather than a subject, by thoroughly describing the way a citizen should live in many of his works. Thoreau's essay, "Civil Disobedience," accentuated personal ethics and responsibility. It urged the individual to follow the dictates of conscience in any conflict between itself and civil law, and to violate unjust laws to invoke their repeal. He directly supplements these arguments he presents in his essay. One night in July in 1846, during his stay at Walden, Thoreau was walking into Concord from the pond when he was approached by the jailer, and charged with not paying his poll tax. Thoreau did not pay his poll tax since 1843 when a friend of his spent the night in jail for not paying his. He did not see why he should have to pay the tax, he had never voted, and he knew that the political tax had to be related with the funding of the Mexican War and the support of slavery, both of which he strongly objected to.
In Walden, he questions the lifestyles that people choose. He makes his readers wonder if they have been chosen the kind of life that will really offer them happiness. ...