Thomas De Quincey 's Gusto : Desires Unfulfilled Essay

1983 Words Nov 1st, 2016 8 Pages
Thomas De Quincey’s Gusto: Desires Unfulfilled
My original primary interest about “Confessions of an English Opium Eater,” by Thomas De Quincey, was to learn whether or not the author deprecates the behavior of taking opium— not only am I unable to conclude the answer to this question when finishing reading the book, but also at least fifty percent of Confessions, I found, depicts De Quincey’s early life, mostly unrelated to opium. Even when it comes to opium eating, he often circumvents the effects of opium on his own body and tends to describe more about the moral afflictions that attack his mind as a result of the bad early-life experiences. Many scholars, thus, consider Confessions to be an incomplete work. For instance, Clarke maintains that “neither the 1821 printing of the Confessions nor the 1856 revision really justifies De Quincey’s original description of it,” which has “the purpose of displaying the faculty” of opium itself (Clarke 368). From my perspective, consequently, it is hardly rewarding to linger much on questioning the usefulness of opium-eating, so long as the main body of the book is focused on something else— the effects of De Quincey’s early life and his unfulfilled desires. Indeed, the book is complete in this sense: It is De Quincey’s woes of the eternal separation from his beloved Ann and his incapability to save the poor that are more relevant to the discussions. It is in these two aspects that he invests his gusto most— or, by definition, the…

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