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Politics in The Romantic Era
Transcript of Politics in The Romantic Era
of Louis XVI. The French Revolution
embraced the romantic motto of "liberty, equality and fraternity." Napoleon rallied the nationalism of the French (a large concept of Romanticism) and used it to fuel the revolution. Romanticism Spreads After witnessing the the French Revolution, other romantic writers started to commentate on the oppressive rule of their own governments and monarchs. This was especially exemplified by the English writers Byron and Shelley. They embraced the romantic ideals of equality and individuality, and used them to find fault in the English Government. The Changing Face of Nationalism Political Beginnings The style and ideas of the Romantic
Era were largely influenced by the
writings of Enlightenment scholars
such as John Locke, Adam Smith, and
Voltaire. These writers preached the
importance of democracy (as well as the evil of monarchy) and the importance of the individual. However, much of the Romantic Era was also a backlash to other enlightenment ideas that seemed to promote totalitarianism. Because of the principles expressed in the Romantic Era, it contributed to many revolutions such as:
The French Revolution
The Irish Uprising of 1798
The American Revolution After Napoleon turned France into his personal empire the nationalism that he had previously used to fuel his revolution turned against him and became part of the anti-monarchy sentiments prevalent throughout the Romantic Era. Romanticism and Classical Education Despite The Romantic Era's initial connection to the Enlightenment, as time progressed romantic writers started instead to praise the classical societies of Greece and Italy. Writers such as Byron and Shelley praised the importance of the individual and democracy that these societies contained. The Reign of Terror and Romanticism After Robespierre gained power at the start of the Revolution the Reign of Terror ensued, villages were burned and people hunted all
in the name of the "Revolution." Violence reached
horrific levels and a new aspect of the The Romantic Era was formed: Gothic. To keep up with the violence people witnessed everyday, many poets turned to increasingly dark subject matter to mirror the real life atrocities, many of these stories were actually thinly masked mirrors of real life events. They were social commentaries on the morality of such actions. Romanticism turns against the Enlightenment After revolutionaries became violent in the Storming of the Bastille and the reign of terror that followed; romantic poets in France focused more on the hardships of the revolution and the now absent democratic ideologies of the enlightenment which they supported. In fact, many romantic writers blamed the Enlightenment for many of the shortcomings of the revolution. The Legacy of The Romantic Era The themes of nationalism, revolution and equality have persisted influencing other poets and nations. For example the romantic poet’s views relating to nationalism were highly influential to the brothers Grimm. Romanticism has since then become very popular in America as well due to its enlightenment ideology, which shares political views with that of the United States founding.