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Zoe Wong

on 12 February 2015

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Transcript of Romanticism

Promoted freedom
Countryside over urbanization
Saw themselves as heroes
Nature was very important
Believed in a close connection with nature was morally healthy
Believed that God dwelled within nature and that God and the natural universe were one and the same.
Can you think of an example from The Scarlet Letter?
Valued the "natural man"
Humans are good but corrupted by society
Imagination and emotions over reason and rules ( to convey one’s personal feelings -individualism)
Covers a very broad range of emotions from awe, protest, horror and terror, to apprehension.
As a result, romanticism can become very abstract (especially in art).
Interest in the supernatural

Values and Beliefs
Genre and Style
Significant Authors and Works
Highlighted Passage

Nathaniel Hawthorne
Well-Known Works:
Twice Told Tales
Mosses From an Old Manse
The Scarlet Letter
The House of the Seven Gables
The Blithedale Romance
The Marble Faun
The Custom House

Romanticism is a movement that dominated the literary, visual, and musical arts from the late eighteenth century until about the 1870s. Romanticism is in no way related to the concept of romantic love; rather, it reflects the movement's focus on "depicting emotional matter in imaginative form".
“Central to it was a validation of both unique human particularity or individuality and the human sense for the infinite, as well as the effort to reconcile the two. The Romantic idea of individuality involved a heightened awareness and legitimization of the emotions and the irrational, against what it took to be the arid rationalism and the narrow, destructive analytic spirit of the eighteenth century. The crucial faculty of the expanded Romantic self was the imagination, which through the emotions and the unconscious could grasp and unite with the infinite in its various characterizations, whether a virtually deified Nature, a more abstract Absolute, or a more traditionally theistic divinity.” (Newman)


Significant Authors and Works
Herman Melville
Well-Known Works:
Moby Dick
The Confidence Man
Billy Budd
Bartleby the Scrivener & Benito Cereno(short stories)
Summary of Moby Dick:
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow(Poet)

Well-Known Works:
The Cross of Snow
The Golden Legend
The New England Tragedies
The Divine Tragedy
Song of Hiawatha
Paul Revere's Ride
Romanticism appealed to Americans initially because of the religion it offered.
It was “the field of thought and expression that had had the longest hold on the American imagination” (Robinson)
Basically, Romanticism was the result of protest against the narrow political class and social oppression.

Calvinism generated controversy and resistance
Growing evangelical movement
They “accentuated the place of choice and individual will in the process of salvation, thus making men and women the agents of their own spiritual fates”
Growing theological movement
“Contested the key theological assumptions of both Calvinism and evangelicalism and emphasized deepened spiritual awareness and character building as essential elements of religion”

Further encouraged by....
Values and Beliefs
Romantic Music
Caused by:
Experimentation with new sounds and styles larger orchestras
more popular, intimate chamber ensembles
more public attention to instrumental music
more attention to the arts in general
less focus on vocal music (which was valued previously)
valued feelings and emotions over words and reason
Examples: Franz Schubert, Frédéric Chopin

Famous Works:
Ave Maria
"The Swan Song"
Famous Works:
Fantasie Impromptu
"Minute Waltz"
Historical Context
Society as a revolt against the Neo-classical philosophy of rationale and order in art
These artists and philosophers of the time were in revolt against the existing social order and they favored the revival of potentially unlimited number of artistic styles (basically anything that aroused their senses or imagination).
Summary of Paul Revere's Ride:
The culture of the Middle Ages created a Romantic sensibility which differed from the Classical art styles which preceded it.
Christian culture dealt with a struggle between the heavenly perfection and the human experience of inadequacy and guilt. This sense of struggle, and ever-present dark forces and dark feelings, was present in the existing culture and part of the whole human experience.
Artists, often being idealists, wanted something more than the dark and narrow minded views that society wanted to force on them.
The novel Moby Dick is an epic tale of the voyage of the whaling ship the Pequod and its captain, Ahab, who relentlessly pursues the great Sperm Whale during a journey around the world. The narrator of the novel is Ishmael, a sailor on the Pequod who undertakes the journey out of his affection for the sea.
Summary of The Scarlet Letter:
Romantic Literature
On April 18, 1775, Paul Revere set out on his now famous ride from Boston, Massachusetts to Concord, Massachusetts. Revere was asked to make the journey by Dr. Joseph Warren of the Sons of Liberty. The purpose was to warn them and the other colonists that the British were preparing to march on Lexington. Revere was taken by boat across the Charles River to Charleston, where he then borrowed a horse from a friend, Deacon John Larkin. This is where the famous phrase “one if by land, two if by sea” originated. While in Charleston, Revere and the Sons of Liberty saw that two lanterns had been hung in the North Church tower, indicating the British movement. Revere then left for Lexington. On his way to Lexington, Revere stopped at each house to spread the word that the British troops would soon be arriving.
Romantic Art
A young woman moves to Boston, Massachusetts while her husband takes care of affairs. After 2 years pass she has an affair with the reverend Dimmesdale. When she becomes pregnant and gives birth to her daughter, Pearl. The town punishes her for committing adultery. She is sentenced to stand on the town scaffold for the town to stare at her and wear a letter “A” on her bosom for the rest of her life. As she stands there she sees her husband in the crowd, who later threatens to find the father of the child and seek his revenge with a new identity as a physician named Roger Chillingworth.

Significant Authors and Works
Literary romanticism can be defined in part by a gradual relaxing of the strict rules of form that had governed the production of previous works, particularly poetry. For example, the rigid and inflexible form of the sonnet fell out of favor, and more free-form poetry began to appear. It was in many ways a revolt against the established order, especially that which was established by the Enlightenment.
Examples: Lord Byron, Walt Whitman, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne.
As a movement, Romanticism arose from sources of sentiment similar to those of Neoclassicism. Its appeal lay, in part, in a longing, even nostalgia, for times that were simpler and more virtuous. Much the same impulse had fueled the revival of classical architecture in England and many parts of continental Europe, as designers, patrons, and intellectuals had sensed that a world of austere and elegant simplicity was to be found in Antiquity. Romantics emphasized a life filled with deep feeling, spirituality, and free expression, seeing such virtues as a bulwark against the dehumanizing effects of the Industrialization period. They also extolled the value of human beings, which they believed to have infinite, godlike potential. Artists of the Romantic Period tried to capture these ideals in their work. However, They rejected the rationalism and rules-driven orderliness that characterized the Neoclassical style of the Enlightenment.
Examples: Fisherman at sea (painting), The Chancel and Crossing of Tintern Abbey Looking Towards the East Window (Painting), English Gardens.
Significant Authors and Works
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Well-Known Works:
"The American Scholar"
"The Present Age"
"The Concord Hymn"
Summary of Nature:
In his essay “Nature”, Ralph Waldo Emerson is of the view that nature and the beauty of nature can only be understood by a man when he is in solitude. It is only in solitude that a man realizes the significance of nature because he is far away from the hustled life he is accustomed to live since childhood. Emerson is of the view that nature gives a human being so much; the sun, the trees, place to live and in return the man gives nothing as a result of which the balance of nature is disturbed. It is extremely essential for a man to take himself away from the distractions of the society to understand the importance of nature and what nature has to offer. Creating a link between the landscape and the stars, Emerson states that everything in the Universe is linked to one another. Instead of being a collection of integrated objects, he sees nature as an integrated whole. It is extremely essential to see nature plainly instead of seeing it superficially as most of us do and Emerson states that he is one of the lucky individuals who sees nature plainly. Because of the reason that he sees nature plainly he is living a life full of peace and solitude. It is essential to see nature from the eyes of a child because a child sees everything without judging it, from plain eyes.
Significant Authors and Works
Henry David Thoreau
Well-Known Works:
A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
"Civil Disobedience"
"Slavery in Massachusetts"
A Plea for Captain John Brown
The Maine Woods
Cape Cod
Summary of Walden:
Walden is an account of the two years during which Henry David Thoreau built his own cabin, raised his own food, and lived a life of simplicity in the woods near Concord, Massachusetts. Thoreau’s idea was that one’s true self could be lost amid the distractions of ordinary life. His experiment consisted of stripping away those distractions, living deliberately instead of automatically, and following the inclinations that arose within him in the solitude, silence, and leisure of his simplified life. He retreated from nonessentials to explore what remained as the core of human identity, assuming that human identity is not based on one’s profession or possessions or social connections.
Romanticism Vocab Time

: Lyric means any fairly short poem expressing the personal mood, feeling or meditation of a single speaker.

Vocabulary from The Cross of Snow:
: painful death of a martyr
: long narrow valleys with steep sides
1. Who could give an example from the poem, where it uses romanticism?
2. What is the tone?
3. Why might Longfellow have chosen to use the cross as the symbol of his grief?
4. How is this poem in a romantic style?
Assignment: Write a paragraph in romantic style.

Transforming Imagination
Where did it come from?
The rose bush by a strange chance, has been kept alive in history; but whether it had merely survived out of the stern old wilderness, so long after the fall of the gigantic pines and oaks that originally overshadowed for believing, it had sprung up under the footsteps of the sainted Ann Hutchinson, as she entered the prison door, we shall not take upon us to determine. Finding it so directly on the threshold of our narrative, which is now about to issue from that inauspicious portal, we could hardly do otherwise than pluck one of its flowers and present it to the reader. It may serve, let us hope, to symbolize some sweet moral blossom, that may be found along the track, or relieve the darkening close of a tale of human frailty and sorrow.
The French Revolution
The French Revolution was influenced by Enlightenment ideals, particularly the concepts of popular sovereignty and inalienable rights. Although it failed to achieve all of its goals and at times degenerated into a bloodbath, the movement played a critical role in shaping modern nations by showing the world the power inherent in the will of the people.
The Industrial Revolution (IR)
As land became a less important economic factor in the course of the Industrial Revolution, the dominance of the traditional landowning class slowly but surely receded. In its place, the bourgeosie became the dominant class, it came to wield political power (Marxists argue that the Westminister system of democracy that was at this time rising to the fore is an institution that fosters the dominance of the bourgeosie), and its outlook and values came to be the dominant ideology even as the gap between the middle class and the proletariat was ever widening.
“Centered on an individual man or woman undertaking an act of choice as the basis of religious experience and religious truth.” (Robinson)
Literary romanticism can be defined in part by a gradual relaxing of the strict rules of form that had governed the production of previous works, particularly poetry. For example, the rigid and inflexible form of the sonnet fell out of favor, and more free-form poetry began to appear. It was in many ways a revolt against the established order, especially that which was established by the Enlightenment.
American musicians
James Hewitt 1770-1827 American composer, conductor and music publisher
Anthony Philip Heinrich 1781 1861 American composer
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