So here it is, my final version of my Walden video essay. Please excuse my Voice, because i have been fighting off a cold this weekend so my voice sounds unpleasant. Anyway, here it is and I hope you enjoy it!
Class Section 1
Walden Literary Analysis
“Do not stay to be an overseer of the poor, but endeavor to become one of the worthies of the world” (Thoreau, pg. 58)
Everyone treats philanthropy as a big deal. In Walden, by Henry David Thoreau; Thoreau states his options on philanthropy quite bluntly bluntly. Most people think that the best way to be philanthropic is to give money, and think they are doing good, yet they do this just to indulge themselves. Thoreau think this is philanthropies biggest downfall. Thoreau belives that people donate money, just to feel good about themselves, but Threau disagrees with this. He belives that it is better to give the poor something other than money that they need, like a roof over there head or a blanket to keep them warm. Thoreau, actually invited some homeless people to come live with them, but they decided to stay homeless and live out on the street sicne they were already getting food, and they possibly did not desire to not live like Thoreau. Thoreau belives the best way to be philanthropic is not to give them money, but to teach them how to live on there own, and he recongnizes only a few people relizes this.
What Thoreau is trying to say is that to many people belive that giving money is the best thing to do, but people like Thoreau are “striking at the root”. They are trying to help the poor in the right way and Thoreau belives that the reason the people donate money, is to get rid of their misery, by making themselves feel good about helping the poor. Thoreau is very right when he talks about philanthropy in my perpsective. This chapter does not mean Thoreau thinks of philanthropy as useless thing or a waist of time, Thoreau see's philanthropy as a good thing, but only if you do certain things like not giving money to the poor,but instead help them out by giving something they actually need like a blanket or a roof over there head. I personaly agree with what Thoreau thinks about philanthropy. Thoreau normally has many thoughts on the world, and I sometimes cannot agree with them, yet I can agree with his thought about philanthropy and being philinthropic with no doubt about it.
Literary Paragraph 2
“As with our colleges, so with a hundred "modern improvements"; there is an illusion about them; there is not always a positive advance…”(Thoreau, pg. 40)
Being lectured is not the best way to be educated. In Walden, by Henry David Thoreau, he thinks of education as a good thing, only when taught right. Thoreau believes that education is a good thing for people, but he clearly disagree with going to college and learn about a subject, like navigation. Thoreau believes that it is much wiser to instead go learn how to sail than being told how to sail. In the book, Thoreau talks about how he believes that it is much better to go out into the world and learn how to do something, and you will gain more experience this way, than going to a college and learning about how to do something, without actually doing it. He states that:
“To my astonishment I was informed on leaving college that I had studied navigation!—why, if I had taken one turn down the harbor I should have known more about it.”(Thoreau, pg.40)
Here Thoreau is emphasizing the importance of education and how you have control over your education ; he is telling us it is better to go out and learn things on our own, and he uses an exampleto emphasize that he could have learned more about navigation if he went to the harbor. Everyone has the ability to take control over their education, someone could easily drop out of school, and still end up fine, because they would take control of their education and learn something from someone instead of getting lectured on it, and not getting to do hands on work. “Thoreau explains that he thinks students should not play life or merely study life, but should LIVE it through experimentation. Thoreau believes attending school in not the way to obtain true wisdom....”-Unknown. In my own opinion, the worst way to get educated is to be lectured, and Thoreau would agree with this. The best way to learn is to actually do it at make mistakes, instead of getting lectured on how something is done, because with out actually doing something, you can't expect to do something perfect the first time.
As for Doing-good, that is one of the professions which are full. Moreover, I have tried it fairly, and, strange, as it may seem, am satisfied that is does not agree with my constitution.
In my eyes, I see this as the most insightful chapter is Walden yet. Thoreau talks about how he thinks giving money to the poor is the wrong thing to do, because who knows what they will do with the money given to then. They might go and buy drugs or alcohol or cigarettes. Instead we should give them things that we have already bought like gloves or blankets or buy them food instead of giving them money since they can be unpredictable. I never actually thought of this, thinking that they can be trusted to spend there money on what they want, at least I though that but the world is not always so perfect. I remember Christian saying that he saw someone who was asking for money than said "Lets be honest, I am going to use the money to buy a drink, I need a drink.". It sad to see people get so addicted to alcohol that they end up buy a beer instead of buying a blanket if they need it.
My favorite quote from this chapter was "There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to on who is striking at the root..." (Thoreau pg. 56). This quote sticks out to me because it shows that many people think they are doing the right thing and think if more people do what they think is right, they will overcome evil, which in this case is poverty. Though, when you give money to a less fortunate person, they might not do the right thing with it and may use it to buy alcohol. The one person who resizes that money is not the best way to help the poor will try to get the less fortunate off of alcohol. In this way, I believe this might have been the wisest thing Thoreau has said this whole book, and for this he has my respect.
“For more than five years I maintained myself thus solely by the labor of my hands, and I found that, by working about six weeks in a year, I could meet all the expenses of living.”