2.8.10 Johnson¹s Rasselas

2.8.10 Johnson¹s Rasselas - Johnsons R...

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Johnson’s Rasselas , pt. II 1. Structure and Plot First part (chapters 1-16) leaves off in Cairo: o Rasselas leaves Happy Valley with Imlac (guide), Nekayah, and Pekuah; o Is in Cairo to make an informed “choice of life” (see p. 74); o But chap. 16 ends with a tension: happiness as ultimately impossible, always compromised vs. happiness as possible, worth pursuing (see p. 76): Rasselas (the book) seems interested in Rasselas’ (the character’s) pursuit but also warns against false hope (see opening paragraph). Second part (chaps. 17-32) picks up here (in Cairo) with the various experiments conducted in pursuit of happiness and a choice of life: 1. Young men of leisure; 2. Professor of “rational fortitude” (p. 78); 3. Private life: a. Country people; b. The retired man of wealth; c. The hermit; 4. Learned men of the assembly; 5. High and low life - o Rasselas and Nekayah divide up the labor of experiment
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here: Rasselas takes high stations (plots, pettiness, faction treachery – p. 87); Nekayah takes lower stations (petty competitions, worthless emulation – p. 88); A discussion about marriage follows: is it necessary for happiness? o
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2.8.10 Johnson¹s Rasselas - Johnsons R...

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