Walden - Study Guide Chapter 16 Summary & Analysis

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Thoreau explores the process of scientific investigation in "The Pond in Winter." He begins with suggestions that the natural world is something of an enigma. Thoreau then seemingly condemns men that come to fish by writing of them: "they never consulted with books, and know and can tell much less than they have done." He continues to compare the fish to valuable and rare items, reiterating a theme of Walden: a suggestion that the foreign and distant are, quite falsely, perceived as a more valuable quality than the familiar and local.

He states the purpose of his exploration, saying he wanted to find the bottom of Walden Pond, which, by some, had long been considered bottomless. He then ridicules the popular perception that the pond was bottomless, saying stories had been around for a long time about its bottomlessness – stories with no foundation...

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This section contains 414 words
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Walden from Nonfiction Classics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.