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Required Reading
Samuel Johnson, The Rambler nos. 1-5, 18, and 39 (1750); you could look here or here;
Voltaire, Candide (1759)—the Norton Critical edition is good but not essential;
W. Jackson Bate, Samuel Johnson (1977), selections here.
Northrop Frye, “Toward Defining an Age of Sensibility,” ELH 23 (1956), 144-152;  
Robert Hopkins and Arthur McGuinness, “Editorial,” Eighteenth-Century Studies 1(1967);
Eighteenth-Century Studies 4:4, 500-506 and 5:1, 201-208 (summer-fall 1971), Report on the Second Annual Meeting of ASECS;
Lester Crocker, “Professor Wolper’s Interpretation of Candide,” ECS 5:1 (1971), 145-56.

Further Bibliography
W. Jackson Bate, The Achievement of Samuel Johnson (1955).
George Saintsbury, The Peace of the Augustans: A Study of Eighteenth-Century Literature as a Place of Rest and Refreshment (1916; 1946)
Sir Leslie Stephen, English Literature and Society in the Eighteenth Century (1903).

Additional Websites and Online Resources
Dictionary of National Biography (British)
Dr. Johnson's House (London)
"Locating London" (1746's London on today's map)
Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum (Lichfield)
ASECS (American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies) 2015 call for papers

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