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In "Into the Wild", what similarities and differences do you see between Chris and...

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warren9053 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Honors

Posted November 7, 2011 at 3:47 PM via web

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In "Into the Wild", what similarities and differences do you see between Chris and Ruess, Waterman, McCunn, and Rossellini?

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kiwi | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted March 24, 2012 at 8:11 AM (Answer #1)

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The main similarities between these men and MCandless is their single-minded determination to conquer some aspect of nature and of themselves.

Krakauer explains the reasons for highlighting the stories of these other adventurers-

 Some insight into the tragedy of Chris McCandless can be gained by studying predecessors cut from the same exotic cloth.

Carl McGunn kept a journal where he detailed his decline before taking his own life. Waterman was undoubtedly deeply affected by his parents’ divorce just like McCandless struggled to cope with his own complex family relationships. Ruess’ letters were very like those which McCandless sent as he travelled, and both were described as “reckless” by people they encountered. Rosselini equalled if not exceeded the intelligence of McCandless. Krakauer notes in Chapter 8-

Like Rossellini and Waterman, McCandless was a seeker and had an impractical fascination with the harsh side of nature. Like Waterman and McGunn, he displayed a staggering paucity of common sense.



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