Flawed Words and Stubborn Sounds: Another Look at Structure and Meaning in Walden. Journal Article uri icon



  • Walden uses landscapes and journeys to chart shifts and conflicts within a consciousness associated with the author, and focuses on language itself as a medium where these conflicts can be enacted and perhaps reconciled. The extended descriptions of the pond suggest the way artistic language both reflects and transforms reality. Close readings of passages like the wood-chopper and iron-horse episodes show how Thoreau creates a clear disjunction between fact and symbol and juxtaposes them to graph a constantly repeated journey between a centripetal fascination with pure art and a centrifugal attraction toward the ineluctable specificity and multiplicity of the outside world.

publication date

  • January 1, 1974

Full Author List

  • Bickman M

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 153

end page

  • 162


  • 8