Category Archives: Johnson (Samuel)

Implore His Aid, in His Decisions Rest

The famous passage from Ecclesiastes–“All is vanity”–inspired a great poem by Samuel Johnson. Johnson’s final conclusion is that we can find happiness only in prayer.

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Johnson: The Bard Instructs by Delighting

Although today we are sometimes suspicious when literature seeks to instruct us, Samuel Johnson considered this to be literature’s primary aim. He held up Shakespeare as proof.

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Peter Wimsey vs. Oklahoma Executions

With Oklahoma resuming its executions yesterday, we need the reminders that Dorothy Sayers and Oscar Wilde give us about holding on to our humanity.

Also posted in Donne (John), Sayers (Dorothy), Wilde (Oscar) | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

In Defense of the English Major

Adam Gopnik makes a spirited defense of the English major in a recent “New Yorker” article.

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No More Privacy–And We Don’t Care

We no longer fiercely guide our privacy, as did the worlds of Austen, Trollope, Thoreau, and Melville.

Also posted in Boswell (James), Melville (Herman), Thoreau (Henry David), Trollope (Anthony) | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Life as a Stage Coach Ride

America is in many ways like the stage coach rides described by Samuel Johnson and Henry Fielding.

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