By Henry James
The main vast choice of Henry James's autobiographical writings ever released bargains a revelatory self-portrait from one in every of America's ultimate novelists and his recognized relations. In 1911, deeply plagued by the demise of his brother William the 12 months ahead of, Henry James all started engaged on a e-book approximately his formative years. As was once time-honored for James in his later years, he dictated his memories to his secretary Theodora Bosanquet, who recalled how “a instantly dive into the previous dropped at the outside treasure after treasure.” A Small Boy and Others (1913) and the 2 autobiographical books that followed—Notes of a Son and Brother (1914) and the unfinished, posthumously released the center Years—stand along with his later novels as one of many enduring triumphs of his ultimate years. not just did James create one of many singular self-portraits in American literature, he additionally shaped a richly specific account of his popular kinfolk, particularly his father, the social thinker Henry James Sr., his brother William, and his pricey cousin Minny Temple, notion for the heroines of 2 of his maximum novels, The Portrait of a girl and The Wings of the Dove.
Rounding out the quantity is a range of 8 different own memories and, as an appendix, his secretary’s insightful and affectionate memoir, “Henry James at Work.”
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Extra resources for Autobiographies: A Small Boy and Others / Notes of a Son and Brother / The Middle Years / Other Writings
D) tells us that household, village, and city-state are like embryo, child, and mature adult: a single nature is present at each stage but developed or completed to different degrees. Where is that nature to be located? (E) suggests that it lies within the indi viduals who constitute the household, village, and city-state: they are po litical animals because their natural needs lead them to form, first, house holds, then villages, then city-states. "An impulse toward this sort of community," we are told, "exists by nature in everyone" ( 1 2 53'29-30).
They thus become much more like God than they do by having children, or doing anything else. In the process, Aristotle claims, they achieve the greatest happiness possible (NE 1 1 77h26-1 1 79'32). 28. APo. 87'3 1-37, Metaph. 1074b34, 1 075'1 1-12, NE 1 141'16-20, 1 14 l b2-8. 29. That is what is meant by the famous, and famously opaque, formulation that God is noesis noeseiis noesis: "thought thinking itself" or "an understanding that is an understanding of understanding" (Metaph. 1 074b33-35).
What explains this caginess may not be faint-heartedness on Aristo tle's part, however, but a confusion on ours. We need to distinguish the question of what happiness is from the question of what the best or happi est life is. Aristotle himself is quite decisive and consistent on the first question: happiness is activity expressing virtue; the contenders are practical activity and theoretical activity; the palm of victory invariably goes to theoretical activity, although practical activity is often awarded second prize.