“Walking”

Thoreau discusses the text “Walking” in first person suggesting that he has written it from a personal experience through his own point of view. According to him walking isn’t an easy task as everybody would think, but it requires an expert. He claims you must be born in a family of walkers (Thoreau 261). When you walk, you are supposed to be completely absorbed by it, not caring about the direction you are taking, the miles you will walk, but all you have to do is admire it. According to him, “…sometimes it happens that I cannot easily shake off the village. The thought of some work will run in my head, and I am not where my body is…What business have I in the woods, if I am thinking of something out of the woods?” (264). It seems that he makes a very big effort to forget about the world even if it’s for a couple of hours, as if by doing so he will discover something that will change his life. When he cannot achieve it, it seems that he gets frustrated at his inability to not do it because it is reinforcing the idea that he is not a good walker which he tries to fight back.
According to Tuan, “Some people try to recapture the past” (188). This is seen with Thoreau who seems upset about the fact that the landscape that was once like a forest has started to change as people are cutting down the trees, and putting fences in the land that he used to walk through. He is so attached to his old memories which keep him from moving on, and accepting that people’s lives have changed. He keeps recalling the places he has revisited. By incorporating the map, it gives the reader an idea of the places he visits and why he doesn’t want it to change. He always goes from the east to the west which in the map it is showing as going from the village or clear spaces into the forest where nature exist. This map is like a symbol as it shows his movement not only away from civilization but also from present into the past. To the land, that he feels shouldn’t stop existing.

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