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Romanticism, Dark Romanticism & Transcendentalism

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Charlee Bassillo

on 30 August 2015

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Transcript of Romanticism, Dark Romanticism & Transcendentalism

Edgar Allan Poe
FONTS
Poe's Death
"The Raven"
ONCE upon a midnight dreary,

while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore--

While I nodded, nearly napping,

suddenly there came a tapping,

As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
University and Army Days
In 1826, attends University of Virginia at 17 years old.
Does well in Latin and French
Drinks heavily and goes into debt
Quits school less than a year later

Early Life
Born in Boston, MA - Jan. 19, 1809
Mother, Elizabeth, leaves with the kids
She dies shortly after (1811)
David, Edgar and Rosalie (children) are separated:
David - lives with grandparents
Edgar - adopted by Mr. & Mrs. John Allan
Rosalie - adopted by another family
At 6, Edgar goes to school in England for 5 years
After quitting school...
He has no money or job skills
Is shunned by John Allan
Joins the U.S. Army in 1827 (at 18)
Attains rank of sergeant major
Mrs. Allan dies
John Allan, in a friendly gesture, signs Edgar's application to West Point.
In West Point
In 1830, enters West Point as a cadet
John Allan refuses to send money
It is thought that Edgar purposely broke rules to be dismissed
A Difficult Life Continues...
Struggling Writer
Desperation in New York
In NY, Poe has no money, no friends, and financial trouble.
Begs John Allan for help, but never receives any.
Even when John dies in 1834, he doesn't mention Edgar in his will.
In 1831, Edgar goes to NYC
publishes some poetry
Submits stories to magazines, but all are rejected.
Married Life (Briefly)
In 1836, Poe marries Virginia Clemm...
... and then in 1847, she dies from tuberculosis.
Career
Poe works as a newspaper editor and a writer throughout his life, but never makes enough money to be comfortable.
On October 3, 1849, Poe is found delirious on the streets of Baltimore:
"in great distress, and ... in need of immediate assistance," according to the man (Joseph W. Walker) who found him.
He dies in Washington College Hospital on Sunday, October 7, 1849 at 5:00 AM.
Poe was never coherent long enough to explain what happened or why he was not wearing his own clothes...
... though he is said to have repeatedly called out "Reynolds" on the eve of his death.
Some sources report that his final words were:


"Lord help my poor soul."

Then, newspapers blamed "congestion of the brain."

The actual cause is a mystery.
(1809 - 1849)
Measuring Meter
in "The Raven"

meter:
End Rhyme
Onomatopoeia
Alliteration
Internal Rhyme
Assonance
Repetition
Metaphor
Consonance
Philosophy of Composition
"Unity of Effect"
Describes the act of writing like a Math equation:
Short enough (100 lines) for one sitting.
Writes about the creation of "The Raven"
Death of a woman = most poetic use of death.
Believed that a poem should attempt to achieve a
single effect.
"Backwards writing" in a way:
Choose the poem's desired effect
Then, everything else is decided (subject, tone, metaphor, repetition, etc.)
Romanticism
Romanticism
= a movement in art, literature, and music in the 19th century.

Imagination
Imagination
was emphasized over "reason."
Seen as
necessary for all art
.
As a backlash against the "Age of Reason" or Neoclassical period.
British writer Samuel Taylor Coleridge called it "intellectual intuition."
Intuition
Idealism
Inspiration
Individuality
Characterized by the five "I"s:
Importance of
emotion
in art.

Romantics also valued
intuition
, or
feelings and instincts
, over reason.

William Wordsworth described poetry as "the spontaneous
overflow of powerful feelings."
Refers to any theory that emphasizes the
spirit, the mind, or language over matter
.

Viewing life
as we would like it to be
rather than how it really is.
The Romantic artist/musician/writer as an "
inspired creator
" rather than a technical master.

The artist as being
spontaneous
rather than precise.
Celebration of individual

freedom
(Women's Rights and Abolitionism are taking root at this time).

For example, Walt Whitman's poem "Song of Myself" begins:

"I celebrate myself.."
How did
this all start
Origins
Began after the French Revolution
In a reaction to the Neoclassical "Age of Reason" and Rationalism:
Revolutionary spirit
Social shift
Desire for independence
Involved all of the arts:
art, music, and literature.
Embraced themes from Middle Ages:
Chivalry and courtly love
Shakespeare came back into vogue.
Not just a literary movement...
rigid
severe
unemotional
draws from ancient Greece and Rome

emotional
deeply-felt
individualistic
exotic
“anti-Classicism”

"Age of Reason" vs. Romantic

Visual Arts
The Death of Marat
Jacques-Louis David
(1793)
Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog
Caspar David Friedrich
(1818)
1730-1820
Emphasized internal order/balance
Musicians: Mozart, Franz Joseph Haydn
1800-1910
Emphasized expression of feelings
Musicians: Franz Lizst, Frederic Chopin
"Age of Reason" vs. Romantic

Music
Symphony No. 25 in G Minor
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
(1788)
Nocturnes
Frederick Chopin
(1827-1846)
American Romantic Writers ...
Viewed
cities
as a place of
moral corruption, poverty and death
(unlike Rationalists)
Looked to the
past for guidance
Saw
purity
,
truth
, and
beauty
in
nature
Embraced
exotic
and
supernatural
Focused on the
everyday experience
Moved
away

from
prior literary
traditions
Sentimentalized the old (folk legend and myth)
Development of slums and poverty (Industrial Revolution) turned people away from Rationalism.
As a reaction to Rationalism or the "Age of Reason."
American Romanticism
(1800-1860)
Rationalism
Romanticism
vs.
Reason
Calculation
Control
Tradition
Societal conformity
Objective fact
Rational
Mechanical
Imagination
Intuition
Spontaneity
Revolutionary energy
Metaphysical
Emotional
Natural
Nature can punish or reward
Often set apart from society
Static characters (little development)
Universe presented as:
irrational
mysterious
incomprehensible
Characteristics of Romantic Writing:
Uses formal language
Impacted by the supernatural
Description provides strong tone
Plot often involves:
romantic love
honor and integrity
idealism of self
Notable Romantic Writers
Henry Wadsworth
Longfellow

The Return of Rip Van Winkle
John Quidor
(1849)
The Headless Horseman Pursuing Ichabod Crane
John Quidor
(1858)
Ralph Waldo
Emerson
Edgar Allan
Poe
Emily
Dickinson
Walt
Whitman
Dark Romanticism
Death/Loss of loved ones
Sin/Evil
Madness
Hardship/pain/tragedy
Darkness
Decay
Greed/Obsession
Common
Tone and Topics:
"Sub-genre" of Romanticism
Focused on the perceived
darkness

of the human soul:
Humans as inherently selfish
Began the Gothic movement
Dreary/remote
settings
Violent or morbid
plot
line
Physically & psychologically tormented
characters
Often involve
supernatural
elements
Often included:
trochee:
The arrangement of stressed and unstressed syllables in a line of poetry that creates a rhythm.
stressed
syllable +
unstressed
syllable
poetic foot:
unit of meter measurement consisting of two or more syllables
trochaic octameter:
a line of poetry consisting of eight trochees or trochaic feet (total of 16 syllables).
Simile
Devices to Identify
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