Why did so many condemn Chris and feel he caused his own death?

Expert Answers
charcunning eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Some feel no pity for McCandless because, after all, he did head into one of the most harsh climates on earth severely unprepared.

When Chris headed into the wild he did not have a compass or an up-to-date map. He had on old boots, a bag of rice and a small gun and I think he had a machete too--and of course his books! Not nearly enough!

He is condemned because he was known to be highly intelligent, yet his lack of planning and preparation shows SERIOUS lack of thought, which eventually ends up in his dying...alone...in a trailer...

The other side though says that McCandless died exactly the way he would have wanted to go. In the wild! Their side contends that Chris went out there knowing exactly what the challenges were and that he faced death with pride and the knowledge that he followed his dreams even though they ended in his death.

mreed27 | Student
Krakauer's friend Roman also points out in Chapter 17 on pages 185-186 (may depend on your version) that, "I hate to admit it, but not so many years ago it could easily have been me in the same kind of predicament. When I first started coming to Alaska, I think I was probably a lot like McCandless: just as green, just as eager. And I'm sure there are plenty of other Alaskans who had a lot in common with McCandless when they first got here, too, including many of his critics. Which is maybe why they're so hard on him. Maybe McCandless reminds them a little too much of their former selves."
Read the study guide:
Into the Wild

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question