Walden - Chapter 2 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 2 Summary

After arguing that his contemporaries live unhealthy, unsatisfying and unpractical lives of excess, Thoreau begins his explanation, in the second chapter of Walden, of how he believes men should live their lives. Based upon his personal experiences, of course, the title of the second chapter, identified by some critics as clichéd, emulates the personal tone that contrasts to the almost academic and theoretical, used in "Economy." It is the first of several paradoxes in style, tone and subject.

Thoreau describes his method of searching for a place to live, to conduct his experiment in leading a simple life. Thoreau presents himself as the wanderer, walking all around the area of where he lived. He avoided ownership of land, going so far as to say he didn't ever want possession of land to burn his fingers. The extremity of the image that possessing land would...

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This section contains 572 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Walden Study Guide
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Walden from Nonfiction Classics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.