Human nature, or character, is the subject that interests me most, and I love to read essays, maxims, and aphorisms on this topic. I enjoy the new science research and modern writing on happiness, but I’m always struck by the tremendous and complex insights of someone like Samuel Johnson.
Here are some of my favorites work:
Samuel Johnson: The Rambler, The Life of Samuel Johnson
Francis Bacon, Essays
La Rochefoucauld, Maxims
La Bruyere, Characters
Samuel Butler, The Note Books
William Hazlitt, Selected Writings
Goethe, Maxims and Reflections
Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom
Schopenhauer, Parerga and Paralipomena, vols I and II (by the way, does anyone know what those words mean?)
Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack
And mark your calendars! Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows goes on sale at 12:01 on July 21st.