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Walden (1854)

by Henry David Thoreau

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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11,600146418 (3.83)2 / 404
Walden (first published as Walden; or, Life in the Woods) is an American book written by noted transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings. The work is part personal declaration of independence, social experiment, voyage of spiritual discovery, satire, and manual for self-reliance. First published in 1854, it details Thoreau's experiences over the course of two years, two months, and two days in a cabin he built near Walden Pond, amidst woodland owned by his friend and mentor Ralph Waldo Emerson, near Concord, Massachusetts. The book compresses the time into a single calendar year and uses passages of four seasons to symbolize human development.… (more)
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English (134)  Spanish (4)  Catalan (2)  French (2)  Swedish (2)  Dutch (2)  Finnish (1)  Hungarian (1)  Italian (1)  German (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (151)
Showing 1-5 of 134 (next | show all)
Boring.

A few interesting thoughts here and there — mainly philosophical ideas, and considerations about nature and the wilderness and their intrinsic value — but most of it is whimsical and messy.

Exaggerated in its claims (you can't learn anything from older people; people are dumb and don't show any initiative; we should strive to live with the bare minimum; poverty is a virtue; the village of Concord, MA, is a shithole of ignorant peasants).

The message isn't clear. Perhaps: be radically independent, shun civilisation, worship freedom and nature and the Classics.

ca. 350 pages detailing the measures of Walden Pond in the Summer, the irregularities in the thickness of the ice layer in the Winter, assorted gossip or legends about people who lived nearby, the exact type of materials he used to build his hut, how and when he built it…

I'll save a few quotes from the book, and an imprecise message about libertarian politics and environmentalism, but that's it, I think. ( )
  tripu.info | Jan 5, 2021 |
I appreciated the ability of Thoreau to feel and describe so fully his deepest thoughts on his surroundings but I did tire of the length of descriptions. ( )
  kenger | Dec 26, 2020 |
Mostly trite observations and nihilism dressed up as romanticism. Stealing nuts from squirrels is a novel experience but rather unilluminating to read about. ( )
  TeaTimeCoder | Dec 23, 2020 |
To borrow the environmental movements phrasing of 'act local, think global', I would sum up Thoreau's Walden as 'live simply and think hard'. So many of the trappings of our lives are unnecessary for our relationship with the land, each other and the larger world of ideas. Fashion, money, great houses, etc. do not bring inner peace or knowledge (p. 9). Books, time to contemplate and people to talk with are all we should need. He says so eloquently in his section on Civil Disobedience, "There is an incessant influx of novelty into the world, and yet we tolerate incredible dullness."

This is my first time reading Walden, but I'm struck by how many excerpts I've heard over the years, without attribution. I think he'd like that, in that the knowledge lives on, not the one who put it on paper at one time.

I heard the following quote in the film Dead Poet's Society: "I went to the woods to live deliberately" (p. 66). What an amazing sentence and thought. It's structure is simple, its effect, on me, forceful and profound.

To end, I like his advice in his section of Civil Disobedience: "Why should we be in such desperate haste to succeed and in such desperate enterprises? If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." ( )
  drew_asson | Dec 3, 2020 |
Katalog KGZ-a:

njegov osobni dnevnik koji sadrži precizne prirodoslovne bilješke, ali prije svega to je djelo koje nalaže promišljen život, građanski i emocionalni, materijalni i duhovni.
"Američki književnik, filozof i naturalist Henry David Thoreau, pristalica Emersonovog transcedentalizma, pokreta koji je zastupao monizam, individualizam, odbacivanje vanjskih autoriteta, ostavio je dubokog i trajnog utjecaja na misao i američku književnost. Zagovornik iskonske povezanosti čovjeka i prirode, Thoreau je ljudski duh stavljao iznad materijalizma i iznad društvenog konformizma. Njegovo najslavnije djelo - 'Walden ili život u šumi' djelo je elokventnog opisa njegovog eksperimenta u življenju s prirodom i od prirode, na način nekoga koji se u samoću i povukao iz duhovnih pobuda." (www.moderna-vremena.hr) (11. 9. 2006.) Walden je naziv jezera na kojem je H. D. Thoreau (1817. - 1862.) proveo dvije godine bilježeći svoja razmišljanja. To je klasično djelo američke književnosti prvi puta objavljeno 1854. godine. U knjizi možemo pročitati i slavni autorov esej "Građanska neposlušnost" (1849.). (X)
  rosenrot | Nov 23, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 134 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (119 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Thoreau, Henry Davidprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Auziņa, IrēnaEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Åsberg, StigIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ābols, ValdisTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bengtsson, Frans G.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Douglas, William O.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Emmerich, EmmaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fischer, TatjanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gissen, MaxEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Groševs, EduardsCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hope, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Immonen, AnttiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Meyer, MichaelIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nason, ThomasIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ross, LauraEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Teale, Edwin Waysecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
I do not propose to write an ode to dejection, but to brag as lustily as chanticleer in the morning, standing on his roost, if only to wake my neighbors up.
Dedication
First words
When I wrote the following pages, or rather the bulk of them, I lived alone, in the woods, a mile from any neighbor, in a house which I built myself, on the shore of Walden Pond, in Concord, Massachusetts, and earned my living by the labor of my two hand only.
Quotations
We are wont to forget that the sun looks on our cultivated fields and on the prairies and forests without distinction. They all reflect and absorb his rays alike, and the former make but a small part of the glorious picture which he beholds in his daily course. In his view the earth is all equally cultivated like a garden. Therefore we should receive the benefit of his light and heat with a corresponding trust and magnanimity.
wherever a man goes, men will pursue and paw him with their dirty institutions, and, if they can, constrain him to belong to their desperate odd-fellow society.
Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but follows religiously the new.
The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.
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Disambiguation notice
Only "Walden" - please don't combine with any edition containing other works as well.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Walden (first published as Walden; or, Life in the Woods) is an American book written by noted transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings. The work is part personal declaration of independence, social experiment, voyage of spiritual discovery, satire, and manual for self-reliance. First published in 1854, it details Thoreau's experiences over the course of two years, two months, and two days in a cabin he built near Walden Pond, amidst woodland owned by his friend and mentor Ralph Waldo Emerson, near Concord, Massachusetts. The book compresses the time into a single calendar year and uses passages of four seasons to symbolize human development.

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Book description
Originally published in 1854, Walden, or Life in the Woods, is a vivid account of the time that Henry D. Thoreau lived alone in a secluded cabin at Walden Pond. It is one of the most influential and compelling books in American literature.
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