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Rather Than Love, Than Money, Than Fame, Give Me Truth

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Samuel Hanson

4/10/10

History

Reforming American Society- Henry David Thoreau

"Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth"

Born David Henry Thoreau on July 12, 1817, in Concord, Massachusetts, to John Thoreau and Cynthia Dunbar, he was a man who was an author, protestor of taxes, historian, and most importantly a philosopher. One of the leaders of the transcendentalism, he brought the idea of simple living and self-reliance into the industrial, materialistic minds of Americans. He was born an abolitionist, always protesting and giving lectures about slavery. He wasn't afraid to speak his mind and wasn't afraid to let others know what was on it.

Henry (he later changed his name to Henry David Thoreau for reasons unknown) was known for leading the idea of transcendentalism alongside his friend and

fellow believer, Ralph Waldo Emerson. Transcendentalism was a philosophical and literary movement that put a true emphasis on living a simple life without the influence of the materialistic world and the celebration the natural beauty of the world. It also encouraged the minds of people to believe and imagine freely and not give into the organized beliefs of the industrial society.

To help settle and enforce this belief of transcendentalism upon him, he built a cabin alongside the shores of Walden Pond near Concord and there he lived alone for two years depending on nature and most importantly, himself. Those years spent on that pond where simple ones. He lived of the land and he was not tempted by the frill and the strong influences of materials not needed by a simple life. The land was his life and he saw that the sinful items that were in the industrial world did not have any importance in the simple life he was living. He wanted others to take part in what he believed in. He thought that the materialistic world that many were living deemed unnecessary and were overly complicated. Thoreau gave many lectures and even wrote the very famous book Walden where he talked greatly about simple living and the freedom of one's inner voice.

Thoreau took part in a great reform. That reform was the reformation of one's living and thoughts. He wanted people to forget the fast paced industrial society and live a relaxed life and he also expressed the idea of free thinking and encouraged all to speak their mind and let their imagination flourish. He had the dream that human society and human nature could be remade.

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