Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Walden or, Life in the Woods (4).

Henry David Thoreau. New York: Literary Classics of the United States, Inc. 1854 (1985).

Why read it? The desire to live close to nature without dependence on material goods. Describes the changing seasons. Offers interesting reflections on modern life.

Quotes and Ideas.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” p. 394.

“Our life is frittered away by detail.” p. 395.

“Why should we live with such hurry and waste of life?” p. 396.

“After a night’s sleep the news is as indispensable as the breakfast.” p. 396.

“…all news, as it is called, is gossip, and they who edit and read it are old women over their tea.” p. 397.

“…news which I seriously think a ready wit might write a twelvemonth or twelve years beforehand with sufficient accuracy.” p. 397.

“For what are the classics but the noblest recorded thoughts of man?” p. 403.

“Books must be read as deliberately and reservedly as they were written.” p. 403.

“…but of reading as a noble intellectual exercise they know little or nothing.” p. 406.

“…for the rest of their lives vegetate and dissipate their faculties in what is called easy reading.” p. 406.

“…and soar but little higher in our intellectual flights than the columns of the daily paper.” p. 408.

To be continued.

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