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Thread: 'Into the Wild's' Chris Mccandless?

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    4x9 Array cascadeco's Avatar
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    Default 'Into the Wild's' Chris Mccandless?

    Anyone read the book by Krakuer (sp?) that documents this kids' story??

    Due to his idealism, I'd initially say xNFx for Chris, although I suppose SP could be a possibility too.

    Any thoughts from those who have read this book or are familiar with the story?

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    No, Chris was pretty clearly an INTJ (to the point of being an ass about things -- in his commitment to his idealistic vision, he abandoned his parents and relational networks completely... something an NF is not liable to do whatsoever, because their idealism INCLUDES others). \

    You can't label "idealism" as an NF thing.

    It's a great book, for many reasons. I'm glad you read it. You should read Into Thin Air (?), too, if you haven't yet.

    edit: I'm sorry if I came across as blunt... I didn't mean it as any sort of slap, if it did come across that way...
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    4x9 Array cascadeco's Avatar
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    Hmm..interesting. This would be why I wanted to hear more opinions!! :-)
    I guess he seemed much more...spontaneous and 'free-spirited' (more a floater in society) and naieve in what he did and why, which is why I hadn't considered NT. He was just so consumed by his vision. I suppose I don't understand NT's well enough.

    I did adore the book. I guess I could empathize with all the feelings Chris had about things, and what he wanted/valued out of life, but I'd never act upon them the way that he did. That would be the distinction.

    Yes, 'Into Thin Air' was another fun read!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cascademn View Post
    I guess he seemed much more...spontaneous and 'free-spirited' (more a floater in society) and naieve in what he did and why, which is why I hadn't considered NT.
    Oh. I saw him as extremely driven, NOT spontaneous or free-spirited. Every one of his actions was very much calculated.

    (Compare him to a real free spirit ... ESFP for example... who would have floated around without any real sense of purpose, just enjoying the moment. And might have given up early on in the process. But Chris very much came across as searching for something; his wandering wasn't really wandering, he had purpose and a goal in mind. Note also how much he studied and planned for his trip into Alaska. His death came from inexperience, not a lack of forethought. An ESFP would have not planned nearly anything out. Chris tried to manage the situation... and thought he had. Unfortunately.)

    I did adore the book. I guess I could empathize with all the feelings Chris had about things, and what he wanted/valued out of life, but I'd never act upon them the way that he did. That would be the distinction.
    I couldn't do it either. I'm too P. I can admire it, but I could never commit to a path that arduous... at least not at his age (20-21?)

    Chris did have such a unique vision, didn't he? And a desire to find something true to commit his life to? To not get latched to the conventional foisted on him?

    Yes, 'Into Thin Air' was another fun read!
    "Fun"?? :horor:

    And "The Hills Have Eyes II" is the feel good movie of the year?

    It was very much a compelling read. John is a good writer.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Oh. I saw him as extremely driven, NOT spontaneous or free-spirited. Every one of his actions was very much calculated.

    (Compare him to a real free spirit ... ESFP for example... who would have floated around without any real sense of purpose, just enjoying the moment. And might have given up early on in the process. But Chris very much came across as searching for something; his wandering wasn't really wandering, he had purpose and a goal in mind. Note also how much he studied and planned for his trip into Alaska. His death came from inexperience, not a lack of forethought. An ESFP would have not planned nearly anything out. Chris tried to manage the situation... and thought he had. Unfortunately.)
    Ok, this makes sense. You are correct, he kept his end goal constantly in his eyes. I was thinking more of his 'random' path to get to the end goal. It didn't seem that he planned everything in between his leaving, and the end goal -- everything in between seemed very 'go with the flow' to me - hanging out in different locations for unplanned lengths of time, and then heading on. But I definitely agree he put a lot of forethought into the Alaska piece.

    I couldn't do it either. I'm too P. I can admire it, but I could never commit to a path that arduous... at least not at his age (20-21?)
    And I couldn't do it, because I'd put so much thought into it ahead of time that I'd decide the end goal would not satisfy what I was really seeking. I felt he was seeking some 'nirvana' that he'd reach with the end goal, and I wouldn't believe that could be attained by a simple journey and change of locale - so that's why I'd nix the plan before I even began it. Although it's very possible I'm projecting my own self/motivations onto him, which isn't fair. He may have just wanted to accomplish his goal, and then he'd be fine, and could go back to 'normal life'. Who knows.

    Chris did have such a unique vision, didn't he? And a desire to find something true to commit his life to? To not get latched to the conventional foisted on him?
    Yes, I definitely felt my heart reaching out to him. He took his life in his own hands in a desire to forge his own path/destiny, that's for sure. I found the whole thing bittersweet. I don't at all ridicule him - it was just that his common sense mistakes (things that most of us do all of the time) happened to matter since he was in life-or-death situations. And, I'm sure I'd make a similar fatal gap in judgement, and would have a similar end.

    "Fun"?? :horor:
    Hehe..um, I meant 'fun' in terms of it being an 'easy read', compared to some of the other books I've read that were written in the 1800's that have lots of big words and are 'dry' reads. :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    No, Chris was pretty clearly an INTJ (to the point of being an ass about things -- in his commitment to his idealistic vision, he abandoned his parents and relational networks completely... something an NF is not liable to do whatsoever, because their idealism INCLUDES others). \

    I saw him as an INFP initially, but then flipped to INFJ after assessing how intensely he worked towards & planned his ideal. I should probably re-read the book, though. I'm not sure abut other NF's, but an INFJ can & will detach like Chris if the person in question is encroaching on their values (especially if we're in super goal oriented mode). Hell, I did it with my own father. My F assessment comes from him planning & living an idea/value that he felt strongly about. I don't see it grounded much in logic & based on my knowledge of the NT temperament, logic is paramount in their decisions. I also think making decisions based on a value is more of an NF thing.

    However, I can see the INTJ & I do see your point. I also can see how he seems to use more Fi than Fe (hence the initial thought of INFP). I'm just hung up on the basis of his decisions, which seem more NF than NT to me.

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    PS - I forgot to mention explicitly that I am basing things here solely on the film version and I have not read the book.

    I just saw the film. In short, it was very profound.

    I seriously doubt the kid is INTJ. An INTJ would have far more sense to his actions and would include contingency plans for escaping a situation if things go wrong. Chris strikes me as the type who secretly craves adventure and one day is driven to finally actualize his internal desires.

    He is probably not extroverted because otherwise I really can't belief that he could plan to spend so much time "alone in the wild" as he did, and "adventurous" can be applied to many introverts as well.

    I think that ISFP is much more apt.

    The first thing that the typelogic description says is "first to hear the different drummer" which is an allusion to Thoreau, followed later by "their impulses yearn to be free".

    ISFP Profile

    That seems like a pretty clear description of Chris to me.

    I shall learn from his example from my safe vantage point in my suburban cave (metaphorically speaking).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Apollonian View Post
    I just saw the film. In short, it was very profound.

    I seriously doubt the kid is INTJ. An INTJ would have far more sense to his actions and would include contingency plans for escaping a situation if things go wrong. Chris strikes me as the type who secretly craves adventure and one day is driven to finally actualize his internal desires.
    Did you read the book?

    I cannot vouch for the movie, so perhaps he was played that way on the screen... but there really is no way the "real" Chris McCandless was an ISFP.

    Based on what I know of MBTI and also based on the male ISFPs I've known, an ISFP would have actually been very pissed off at him for treating his family the way Chris did. (And I don't say it lightly, because ISFPs are so easy-going... but faced with behavior like Chris', the judgment normally coming out of an INFP when their values are crossed would be very apparent here in the ISFPs as well.)

    By normal social convention, Chris was really a jerk and not a sentimental/relationally focused person at all. He was a very "cold" and very "intense" person without any real ability to compromise, especially for the sake of salving someone's feelings or preserving relationships... those were minor issues to him.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Fascinating. I have not read the book, and it seems like the acting/screenwriting in the film may very well have played Chris up much more as a Romantic figure than he probably was in real life.

    In that sense, I now see exactly what you are talking about. Isn't it interesting what can be lost in the retelling of a story once the tendency to legend takes hold?

    I'd be interested in the impressions people have of the film after reading the book. To be honest, I don't think I will manage to read the book any time soon (my reading list is already backed up).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Did you read the book?

    I cannot vouch for the movie, so perhaps he was played that way on the screen... but there really is no way the "real" Chris McCandless was an ISFP.

    Based on what I know of MBTI and also based on the male ISFPs I've known, an ISFP would have actually been very pissed off at him for treating his family the way Chris did. (And I don't say it lightly, because ISFPs are so easy-going... but faced with behavior like Chris', the judgment normally coming out of an INFP when their values are crossed would be very apparent here in the ISFPs as well.)

    By normal social convention, Chris was really a jerk and not a sentimental/relationally focused person at all. He was a very "cold" and very "intense" person without any real ability to compromise, especially for the sake of salving someone's feelings or preserving relationships... those were minor issues to him.
    I've also read the book, and I have to agree - there's no way he is an ISFP. I've actually never watched the movie.

    I've noticed the two ISFP's I've dated have been very family oriented, despite their quirkiness & seemingly unconventional ways. I remember getting really irritated at my mother one day & my ISFP ex absolutely lashing out on me for speaking ill of her. He was also very uncomfortable with my estranged relationship with my father.

    I can see the INTJ. However, I'm still confused about the underlying motivation of his decisions, which strike me as more F. Do you think this may be a tertiary Fi acting a bit out of control? Would an INFP have more control over their Fi impulses due to it being their dominant function?

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