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About the book
  • Published: 26 January 1984
  • ISBN: 9780140390445
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $24.99

Walden And Civil Disobedience




Henry David Thoreau's masterwork Walden is a collection of his reflections on life and society. In 1845, he moved to a cabin that he built with his own hands along the shores of Walden Pond in Massachusetts. 

Disdainful of America’s booming commercialism and industrialism, Henry David Thoreau left Concord, Massachusetts, in 1845 to live in solitude in the woods near Walden Pond. Walden, the account of his stay, conveys at once a naturalist’s wonder at the commonplace and a Transcendentalist’s yearning for spiritual truth and self-reliance. But even as Thoreau disentangled himself from worldly matters, his musings were often disturbed by his social conscience. Civil Disobedience, also included in this volume, expresses his antislavery and antiwar sentiments, and has influenced non-violent resistance movements worldwide. Both give a rewarding insight into a free-minded, principled and idiosyncratic man.

  • Pub date: 26 January 1984
  • ISBN: 9780140390445
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $24.99

About the Authors

Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau was born in 1817 in Concord, Massachusetts, the town where he would live for most of his life. Along with Ralph Waldo Emerson, he is the most famous of the American Transcendentalists, a group of philosophical thinkers who frequently explored the relationship between human beings and the natural world. He was educated at Harvard, and over the course of his life took on a number of different occupations, including lead-pencil maker, schoolteacher and surveyor.

Thoreau was outspokenly critical of the American government, fervently opposed to slavery, and an advocate of passive resistance. Whilst Walden (1854) is his best-known work, his 1849 essay ‘Civil Disobedience’ has inspired non-violent political activists the world over, including Mahatma Ghandi and Martin Luther King Jr, and his nature writings are considered ground-breaking works in ecology. He died in his hometown of Concord in 1862.


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