Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Emerson on Thoreau

Ralph Waldo Emerson, journal entry from June, 1851:

Thoreau wants a little ambition in his mixture. Fault of this, instead of being the head of American engineers, he is captain of [the]huckleberry party. (Bliss Perry, ed., The Heart of Emerson's Journals, Houghton Mifflin, 1926, p. 256.)

As a former student of engineering, I am glad Thoreau stuck to his walking and writing. Like Kierkegaard, he served as a much-needed corrective to the hustle and frenzy of his age.