Krakauer the Subversion of Felicity Essay

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Krakauer

The Subversion of Felicity

There are several instances in the essay of Jon Krakauer entitled "Selections From Into the Wild" in which the author elucidates some of the principles espoused by Daniel Gilbert in the latter's essay "Immune to Reality." Krakauer's essay traces the adventures and misadventures of a young man who journeys into the Alaskan wilderness because he believe it will make him happy. Gilbert's essay is largely about the fact that people do not actually know what makes them happy, and that what makes them feel good for the moment will actually produce unhappiness in the future. The experiences of Chris McCandless, the young man in Krakauer's essay, demonstrate that what Chris believed would make him happy did not and eventually led to his downfall.Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
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One of the central precepts in Gilbert's essay is that people are actually less happy when they have more choices. When they are simply stuck with a particular choice or decision, they tend to remain happy with it. The following quotation readily underscores this fact. "…we are more likely to find a positive view of things we're stuck with than of the things we're not" (Gilbert, 141). This fact is demonstrated in Krakauer's rendition of McCandless's view of a bus shelter in the Alaskan wilderness. The young man embarked on a journey in this area in order to find solitude and get away from all human comforts. Subsequently then, when Chris initially encountered the shelter of a bus, the youngster only stayed there for a short while because there was another option -- the big, bad wilderness of Alaska that Chris believed would make him more happy to camp in. But to his surprise, once Chris found out how tough it was to travel in those conditions, the young man was quite happy staying the duration of his trip in the bus shelter, which the following quotation proves. "A week later he was back at the derelict vehicle, without any regret" (Krakauer, 208). McCandless was "without regret" because the young man was actually happy staying at the bus now that there were had no other places to go. At first the bus was not good enough for him because there were other options to entertain, but Chris became happy with it when it was his only option. This fact demonstrates… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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