The Trouble with Wilderness

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“The Trouble with Wilderness” Has the value of wilderness been overexposed to the point of exaggeration and fabrication? Under constant appraisal, the wilderness is said to be a pristine place that has been left untouched by the human disease. Cronon’s work, The Trouble with Wilderness; or Getting Back to the Wrong Nature has a different definition in mind that suggests that wilderness is not exactly what it seems, but more so a creation that can be used as a place to go to ‘get away from it all’. Wilderness cannot be destroyed by the very thing from which it was created from, therefore humans have only added on to it rather than destroyed it. Ultimately, the sources behind the transformation of the wilderness lie behind the sublime and the frontier. Held upon a pedestal, wilderness is praised for its natural aspects and distinct separation from humanity. Cronon reveals how untainted the wilderness really is, a fact that can make anyone’s eyebrow rise: “it’s a product of that civilization, and could hardly be contaminated by the very stuff of which it is made.” If the wilderness is a product of modern civilization, then can it really be seen as the last trace of untouched nature which has not been polluted by civilization? Cronon suggests that specific places that are labeled as wilderness cannot be the wilderness because they are places that have been enclosed behind huge welcome signs and tourist maps. Over the years, people have molded the vision of the wilderness into parks such as the Niagara Falls, Yosemite, and Yellowstone in addition to others. What had been seen as beautiful is now captured within specific boundaries and listed as a designated location for wilderness. It was not until recently that people saw the wilderness in a positive manner. Two hundred and fifty years ago people would not be found roaming remote areas just

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