The conflict between scientific observation and poetry, reflections on abolition, transcendental philosophy, other concerns are explored in this superb general selection from Thoreau's voluminous Journal. Here are "...the choicest fruits of Thoreau..." — Nation.
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Henry David Thoreau kept a journal for 24 years, starting at the age of 20. He died in the spring of 1862. His life began and ended in Concord. As is recorded in his first entry, he writes that it was due to Ralph Waldo Emerson that he felt prompted to keep a journal. Ralph simply asked him: "Do you keep a journal?" The Heart of Thoreau's Journals contains not the full volumes of all his journal's entries; it contains only the very `heart `of it all --219 pages' worth. Writing a journal was an integral part of Thoreau's life. It is said that he feared that he lived only for his journal writing. Thus, his apparent talent for writing found necessity in journal application where his deepest thoughts could be transcribed. Perhaps he thought journal writing a method to improve the estate of one's own soul, like he once wrote for an entry: "He enjoys true leisure who has time to improve his soul's estate." Perhaps Thoreau found a sort of catharsis in journal writing like most...
The Pragmatic Mystic Henry David as guide and inspiration.
Reading Thoreau is simply sublime. In my view, he, Twain and Lincoln were the greatest American prose writers, certainly in the 19th century, but perhaps of all time. This is meant to be a worthy selection and it was. I read Thoreau directly all the time, but often pick this up to peruse.
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