Rhetorical situation


This excerpt from Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer consists of a letter written by Chris McCandless. As he was the original author of the text, it makes sense to focus on him when describing the rhetorical situation.

McCandless was an American man born into a well-off family. After graduating from college, McCandless donated his savings to an organization dedicated to reducing global poverty. Then, McCandless changed his name to Alexander Supertramp and began a nomadic lifestyle, working when needed and spending as little money as possible: “I have been working up here in Carthage, South Dakota for nearly two weeks now.” (p. 208, ll. 1-2). The name Supertramp could point to McCandless' intention of adopting a life of traveling, free from the constraints of social and economic conventions.

In the letter to Ronald Franz, McCandless calls himself Alex McCandless, showing he has not completely given up his real name. 

During his “Alaskan Odyssey” (p. 208, l. 16) McCandless carried inadequate equipme...

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