Vol. 1 No. 1 (2021): Beginnings
Articles

Nostalgia of the Beginnings: A Rewriting of H. D. Thoreau's Walden

Andreea Popescu
University of Bucharest

Published 2021-05-29

Keywords

  • sacredness,
  • nature,
  • initiation,
  • vision,
  • transcendentalism

Abstract

Henry David’s Thoreau book Walden recreates in a literary form the period that the author spent in the woods near Walden Pond. Being a transcendentalist influenced by Emerson’s philosophy, Thoreau reiterates the essential role that nature has in the spiritual and moral development of man. In Walden the author describes a return to a primordial age in which man lived in a state of wonder before the beauty of the universe and in a permanent communion with it. The sacredness of nature is rendered through ritual gestures that accompany man on his road to revelation. Thus, the period of time spent by Thoreau near Walden Pond acquires the qualities of an initiation during which man rediscovers his self and undergoes a spiritual awakening.