Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version
KEY LITERARY ELEMENTS
Thoreau, the main character and narrator of Walden, lived in a small cabin on Walden Pond during the entire book. His nearest neighbor was a mile away. His cabin cost $28.12 to build and was 10x15 feet in size. Walden Pond was located deep in the woods of Massachusetts, near the town of Concord. There were other ponds in the area, including Flint's (or Sandy) Pond, Goose Pond, Fair Haven Pond, and White Pond. Walden Pond was clear and deep. In places, the pond was crystal clear to 30 feet; in other places, the pond plunged to a depth of over 100 feet deep. Thoreau described Walden Pond as approximately half-a-mile long and two miles around, with hills on all sides
The events in Walden took place between the years of 1845 and 1847. The text was composed sometime after 1847 and before 1854.
The only main character in the book is the author and narrator, Henry David Thoreau. He is a naturalist who has chosen to live in isolation for two years as part of a personal experiment of self- realization and self-improvement. He is deeply introspective and philosophical; he is also passionate about his experiment and committed to his ideas.