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About Henry David Thoreau
Photo by Benjamin D. Maxham active 1848 - 1858 [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
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"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."
In 1845, the transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau moved from his home in the town of Concord, Massachusetts, to a small cabin he built by hand on the shores of Walden Pond. He spent the next two years alone in the woods, learning to live self-sufficiently and to take his creative and moral inspiration from nature. Part memoir, part philosophical treatise, part environmental manifesto, Walden is Thoreau’s inspirational account of those extraordinary years and one of the most influential books ever written.
This reader’s edition, the largest one-volume edition of Thoreau’s Journal ever published, is the first to capture the scope, rhythms, and variety of the work as a whole. Ranging freely over the world at large, the Journal is no less devoted to the life within. As Thoreau says, “It is in vain to write on the seasons unless you have the seasons in you.”
The Complete Novels:
A Week On The Concord And Merrimack Rivers
A Yankee In Canada
The Maine Woods
Walden, Or, Life In The Woods
The Complete Poems
The Complete Essays:
A Plea For Captain John Brown
A Walk To Wachusett
A Winter Walk
An Essay On Love And Chastity
Aulus Persius Flaccus
Herald Of Freedom
Homer. Ossian. Chaucer. Extracts From A Lecture On Poetry, Read Before The Concord Lyceum, November 29, 1843
Life Without Principle
Martyrdom Of John Brown
Natural History Of Massachusetts
Night And Moonlight
On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience
Paradise (to Be) Regained
Sir Walter Raleigh
Slavery In Massachusetts
The Last Days Of John Brown
The Succession Of Forest Trees
Thomas Carlyle And His Works
Wendell Phillips Before The Concord Lyceum
Wild Apples: The History Of The Apple-tree
The Complete Journals
Familiar Letters Of Henry David Thoreau
"Walden, or Life In The Woods" is a book of the American writer and philosopher Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862). It was published in 1854.
The autobiographical and, at the same time, literary account of Thoreau’s two-year life in a self-built log cabin at a forest lake in the wilderness of Massachusetts has become a classic of alternative life drafts. It is not a novel in the proper sense, but a literary work of his diary entries and notes. Thoreau, in his contemplations, devotes himself to various aspects of human existence; he reflects on economics, loneliness, the animals of the forest, and the importance of reading classical literary works. "Walden" is one of the most influential books in American literary history.
This edition includes supplementary the famous essay „On the Duty of Civil Disobedience“ by Thoreau. The eBook corresponds to about 410 book pages.
Thoreau, in the second chapter, "Where I Lived, and What I Lived For," talks about how he once considered buying the Hollowell farm for himself but the purchase fell through. Instead, he created a new existence for himself at Walden, where he found joy and fulfillment in nature, truly awakening in his mornings there, while most of society remains perpetually asleep, living mean lives when the possibility of a much better life is possible. The key to achieving such a life, he says, is simplicity. In the third chapter, "Reading," Thoreau describes how he derives enlightenment from reading Homer and other great writers, men who spoke of the truth and speak of life in terms too noble for most to understand. Most of society, however, is not content to strive after such truths and instead wastes their time reading popular fiction and newspapers, when they should instead be dedicated to improving the intellectual culture, making the village of Concord become a university.
However, as Thoreau relates in the fourth chapter, "Sounds," he spent his time during his first summer at Walden hoeing beans, rather than reading, or sitting all morning watching and listening to the birds. That reverie is broken by the whistle and rumble of the passing train, which reminds Thoreau of the destruction of nature and country life by progress and industrialization. In the evening, the hoots of the owls make him melancholy, reminding him of human cries of sorrow. In the fifth chapter, "Solitude," Thoreau feels so much a part of nature that he scoffs at the suggestion of one of his townsmen that he might be lonely at Walden. Instead, he relates his distaste at village life, where people see too much of each other, so that human interaction becomes trivial. In the sixth chapter, "Visitors," Thoreau is pleased that those who would bother him with trivial matters don't visit him at Walden. Instead, his visitors are Canadian woodcutter, whose straightforward thinking and love of life please Thoreau. Other visitors include half-wits from the almshouse, who Thoreau thinks are more intellectual than most overseers, and men of business, who no longer really enjoy nature. The happiest people to visit the pond are children and young women.
In chapter seven, "The Bean-field," Thoreau describes how he hoed and tended two acres of beans, some of which he sold, for a profit of $8.71 _. Though passing farmers criticized him for not using a plow or fertilizer, having to work so long and hard made him grow close to the soil, truly enjoying his work rather than seeing it as a means of profit, like most farmers. The eighth chapter, "The Village," recounts Thoreau's discomfort in visiting town every few days, where people's stares and thirst for gossip are invasive and where the attractions of pubs, stores, and shops are a temptation. He is always relieved to return home to his cabin but worries that society will seek one out wherever he goes.
Eight classic works presented in a single beautiful volume
Transcendentalism most prominent authors and their most quintessential works joined in a single convenient collection
- WALDEN by Henry David Thoreau
- WALKING by Henry David Thoreau
- ON THE DUTY OF CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE by Henry David Thoreau
- SELF-RELIANCE by Ralph Waldo Emerson
- NATURE by Ralph Waldo Emerson
- THE AMERICAN SCHOLAR by Ralph Waldo Emerson
- THANATOPSIS by William Cullen Bryant
- THE ARTIST OF THE BEAUTIFUL by Nathaniel Hawthorne