Is it ethical to completely abandon your life, and live off of the land? A life free of laws, regulation, free of friends and family. In Jon Krakauer's Into the Wild, the protagonist, Christopher McCandless does exactly that. He grew up fairly happy, but as he got older he realized how materialistic and brainwashed his parents were, reflecting America. He sees how greedy and wasteful people get when they are exposed to all of these luxuries of life, and how it blinds them from what really matters in life. Based on Chris' observations and experiences, he grew up the opposite, not wanting everything, and only wanting what he needs. All of these displeasing images McCandless sees, are exactly what eventually drives him to drop everything and goes off on his wild adventure, "Into the Wild.".
Christopher comes from an upper-class family who has seemingly achieved the "American Dream." Christopher's father, Walt, was a cheating and selfish man was an antenna specialist employed by NASA while his mother, Billie, worked as a secretary at Hughes Aircraft. Christopher was closest to his younger sister Carrie. The McCandless family enjoyed all the "goodies" associated with the status they had. Although Christopher did not agree with his family's lifestyle, he went to college anyways, graduating Emory University in 1990. Christopher was an A average student and captain of the cross-country team but thought that titles and honors were immaterial and irrelevant.
Christopher had what many believed was a happy family. He had both parents, each with stable jobs, and a sister. Carrie recently released a book, The Wild Truth, that shows us more about him and his family. In her book Carrie tells us that Walt was an abusive father who would physically abuse not only his wife but also his children. It was also mentioned that Christopher disapproved of many things his family did, although the biggest would probably be his father's affair.