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Michel de Montaigne was one of the most influential figures of the Renaissance, singlehandedly responsible for popularising the essay as a literary form. This Penguin Classics edition of The Complete Essays is translated from the French and edited with an…

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Providing a series of fascinating views of Imperial Rome, The Letters of the Younger Pliny also offer one of the fullest self-portraits to survive from classical times. Pliny's lively and very personal letters address an astonishing range of topics, from a…

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This volume contains a generous selection from the essays Johnson published twice weekly as "The Rambler" in the early 1750s. It was here that he first created the literary character and forged the distinctive prose style that established him as a public figure.…

Dialogues And Letters

by C Seneca

|November 1, 1997

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Included in this volume are the dialogues On the Shortness of Life and On Tranquility of Mind , which are eloquent classic statements of Stoic ideals of fortitude and self-reliance. This selection also features extracts from Natural Questions , Seneca's…

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Reflections by the creator of the essay form display the humane, skeptical, humorous, and honest views of Montaigne, revealing his thoughts on sexuality, religion, cannibals, intellectuals, and other unexpected themes. Included are such celebrated works as "On…

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Composed during a critical time in the evolution of European intellectual life, the works of Meister Eckhart (c. 1260-1327) are some of the most powerful medieval attempts to achieve a synthesis between ancient Greek thought and the Christian faith. Writing with…

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"Surely his most interesting, plausibly his most memorable, and . . . arguably his best book" — The New York Times Book Review For John Steinbeck, who hated the telephone, letter-writing was a preparation for work and a natural way for him to communicate his…

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One of the world's most celebrated and tragic love affairs Through the letters between Abelard and Heloise, we follow the path of their 12th-century romance, from its reckless and ecstatic beginnings when Heloise became Abelard's pupil, through the suffering of…

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Georges Perec produced some of the most entertaining and spirited essays of his age. His literary output was amazingly varied in form and style and this generous selection of Perec's non-fictional work also demonstrates his characteristic lightness of touch, wry…

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"It is not enough to have a good mind; it is more important to use it well" René Descartes was a central figure in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century. In his Discourse on Method he outlined the contrast between mathematics and…

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It was in his letters that Jack Kerouac set down the raw material that he transmuted into his novels, exploring and refining the spontaneous prose style that became his trademark. The letters in this volume, written between 1940, when Kerouac was a freshman at…

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In the four and a half centuries since Machiavelli’s death, no single and unanimously accepted interpretation of his ideas has succeeded in imposing itself upon the lively debate over the meaning of his works. Yet there has never been any doubt about the…