6 Responses to Walden by Henry David Thoreau

  1. I haven’t read Walden in ages, so I can’t remember much of it, although I do recall struggling with it. That is a beautiful book cover. I do think that Thoreau has been criticized for being quite judgmental, so that makes him even more difficult to read out of his time.

    • bookbii says:

      I think it’s still worth reading, there is much to what he has to say and there are moments of pure beauty. But it is a pretty hard read. The cover is wonderful, isn’t it. When I bought it the bookshop owner didn’t want to let it go, she was stroking the cover lovingly and saying goodbye!

  2. I’ve tried but failed to read this is the past although Thoreau’s ideas about the way in which the natural world refreshes us resonates strongly. I liked your ‘clap-trap’ comment! It’s one of those books that’s in danger of being treated with a little too much reverence, I suspect.

    • bookbii says:

      I think you’re right that there’s a sense of reverence around Walden, but perhaps this comes as much from the great works it has influenced as the text itself so it is perhaps deserving of its status. But it is definitely not a flawless work and a difficult read. I’m glad I’ve read it.

  3. SimplyMe says:

    “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.” This sentence alone validates Thoreau having put ink on paper in my estimation. Although I myself live in a rainforest environment (speaking of going “to the woods”) with the Pacific Ocean as one doorstep and the inland Vancouver Island passage as another, still I think and feel that the power behind what Thoreau has identified, what Dillard expresses, and so many others is a three-fold impetus: (1) to be as aware as is possible, (2) to be as open as is possible, and (3) to be as respectfully responsive as is possible.
    I agree with your entire review of Walden and look forward, as always, to your next sharing.

    • bookbii says:

      I am so jealous of where you live! I used to live very much in the countryside, heather-speckled hills all around, but now I live in a very flat place where the country seems much further away.

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