The History of Rasselas

Publication Date: October 2, 2012

Chapter: English Literature During The Restoration And The Eighteenth Century

It occurred to me last week that, with Lit Brick, variety really is the spice of life. As such, I'm taking a little break from Gilgamesh (though I do intend to do it all eventually) to bring us back to basics: seemingly random comics from the Norton Anthology of English Literature. Because 80+ strips in a row on a single topic would be madness.

And so we find ourselves with Samuel Johnson, who is - quite frankly - a bore. Amid his essays and his dictionaries, he did - however - write the occasional story. The History of Rasselas therefore tells the history of, well, Rasselas, a prince in Africa who is trapped in a valley paradise. While everyone else seems content to party the night away, Rasselas is depressed; he reasons that everyone needs to want for something in order to be truly happy. If you want for nothing, then there's really no point in living. According to him. I, for one, would be totally okay with that problem.

Author: Samuel Johnson • Year: 1759 • Info: Wikipedia

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