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Rasselas and Other Tales

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ISBN-10: 0300044518

ISBN-13: 9780300044515

Edition: 1990

Authors: Samuel Johnson, Gwin J. Kolb

List price: $125.00
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Description:

This volume brings together three of Johnson's longest fictional pieces, works which embody different literary genres but share unusual similarities in some of their principle themes and emphases. Rasselas, perhaps the most popular of Johnson's publications, is a philosophical tale that encompasses the full range of Johnson's thinking on moral, psychological and literary matters. It is considered by many to be central to an understanding of Johnson and his age. The Vision of Theodore, a moral allegory, and The Fountains, a fairy tale, demonstrate clearly the variety of Johnson's narrative skills.
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Book details

List price: $125.00
Copyright year: 1990
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication date: 12/26/1990
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 368
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.430
Language: English

Samuel Johnson was born in 1709, in Lichfield, England. The son of a bookseller, Johnson briefly attended Pembroke College, Oxford, taught school, worked for a printer, and opened a boarding academy with his wife's money before that failed. Moving to London in 1737, Johnson scratched out a living from writing. He regularly contributed articles and moral essays to journals, including the Gentleman's Magazine, the Adventurer, and the Idler, and became known for his poems and satires in imitation of Juvenal. Between 1750 and 1752, he produced the Rambler almost single-handedly. In 1755 Johnson published Dictionary of the English Language, which secured his place in contemporary literary circles. Johnson wrote Rasselas in a week in 1759, trying to earn money to visit his dying mother. He also wrote a widely-read edition of Shakespeare's plays, as well as Journey to the Western Isles of Scotland and Lives of the Poets. Johnson's writing was so thoughtful, powerful, and influential that he was considered a singular authority on all things literary. His stature attracted the attention of James Boswell, whose biography, Life of Johnson, provides much of what we know about its subject. Johnson died in 1784.