In 1845 Henry David Thoreau, one of the principal New England Transcendentalists, left the small town of Concord for the country. Beside the lake of Walden he built himself a log cabin and returned to nature, to observe and reflect – while surviving on eight dollars a year.
From this experience emerged Walden, one of the great classics of American literature, and a deeply personal reaction against the commercialism and materialism that Thoreau saw as the main impulses of mid-19th-century America. Here also is Civil Disobedience, Thoreau’s essay on just resistance to government, which not only challenged the establishment of his day but has been used as a flag for later campaigners from Mahatma Ghandi to Dr Martin Luther King.
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The reader conveyed a persistent tone of anger, resentment and scorn. Never just thoughtful. I kept wondering what voice I would have heard reading the actual book and how reading it myself would have changed my experience of the book.
I want to feel good when I complete a story & am a little harsh on depressing ones. There are a few sad ones that I love but not many.
Thoreau wrote with passion and sometimes anger. The performance reflects Thoreau's bitterness with the government and people of Concord and the United States. Thoreau looks deep into himself and society. The writing is amazing and Degas played to the character almost as if he was an old friend of Thoreau.
This is a great book, but I couldn't get into listening to it. I found myself drifting off to sleep or day dreaming. I think this was partly because the narrator's voice is rather depressing to listen to--flat, sad and dejected--although this very well may be the tone of the writer's voice and not the narrator's fault.
The book is amazing but most of the literate world already knows this. The reading is ok. At first sounding poetic but as the tone of each sentence goes through the same cyle of inflection, it starts to become repetitious and boring. The narrator begins each sentence strong and clear and slowly meanders to a quiet finish, almost whispering the last words. This would be fine ocaasionally but as it continues to recur you get exhausted listening to him. By no way should this trump the importance of this book in every collection and if your prefered method of digestion is auditory, I maintain a high recommendation for the purchase of this work.
Henry David could not read Walden's timeless words any better than Degas. I've listened to it many times, and I hear new wisdom with each listen. I first read Walden 50 years ago, and Thoreau's message is just as timey today as it was then. Degas does justice to this everlasting classic. Thoreau by Degas is a treasure for all nature lovers.
This book will help you stop and reevaluate things. Too caught up in the struggles of modern life? Thoreau's Walden is a must read.
I tend to evaluate a book by 2 sets of criteria: My own subjective enjoyment, and then also by literary standards.
'Walden' is beautifully written, a literary gem. The words can phrases can almost be savoured and appreciated. The subject matter idyllic with wonderful values.
Unfortunately, its wisdom could only be applied with great difficulty and a set of hugely life-threatening circumstances in today's world. Or perhaps this is only true where I live.
But it is dreamy. A kind of Utopia.
On a personal level, i did find myself getting distracted and rather bored in sections involving lengthy descriptions of nature.
5 Stars as a literary work, 3 for personal enjoyment.
with the best
Henry,the main character with deep thoughts about life. Very useful knowledge of living.
an attitude of awe.
MUST READ/LISTEN TO THIS BOOK
Reader. Painter. Newspaper columnist. Nurse. Humane Society. Lake life. Walker. Happily remarried - was a widow.
I listened to this because a recent speaker quoted from it. I found it as fresh and relevant to daily life and humanity as when it was written. If you have no patience for the ritual of the world and want to get to the heart of the matter, this book delivers now and well into the future. It is timeless and amazing both. You will find it worthwhile.
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