Classicism vs Romanticism
Classicism vs Romanticism
The Romantic Movement Classicism = reason (order / balance) and social concerns over personal focus: the Romantics stressed the individual, imagination, and emotions Romantic Movement Born in Europe in the 18th century as a response to neoclassicism In the U.S. in the 19th century (1800’s) American Literature – wanted to break away from European style – create American style Classicism (Age of Reason) Definition: Believed that reason is the dominating characteristic of both nature and human nature, and both are governed by fixed, unchanging laws Classicism 18th C (1700’s) Nature= a self-contained machine, whose laws could be rationally understood Valued clarity, order, balance Imagination had to be restrained by reason and common sense Classicism Upheld tradition Resisted change Human limitations Reason over Social over Common over Imagination Personal Individual all emphasized by Romanticism Romanticism Definition: Emphasized the emotions, an individual, intuition Move beyond the limits of reason: explore imagination and the supernatural Romanticism 1800 – 1830 Imagination gives expression to that which marks each person’s unique being All art is the imaginative expression of the inner essence of the individual/claim for individual freedom. Romantic writers tried to express their own intuitive experiences. Common Romantic Subjects Nature The Past Inner World of Human Nature Topics: Settlers, Native Americans, madness, sin, and guilt (gothic) Nature Emphasized beauty, strangeness, mystery of (not rational laws) Saw as an organic process, constantly developing and changing Connection between human imagination and the natural world The Past Later Romantic poets used dramatic incidents from early American history Inner World of Human Nature The exploration and expression of the writer’s most private inner being. Belief that this interior world of intense feeling is not ruled by reason. Interested in the irrational depths of human nature. A Quick Comparison Age of Reason Reason Social (society) Common Common sense Tradition Rational law of nature Human limitations Romanticism Imagination Personal Individual freedom Intuition Social reforms, spiritual growth (change) Nature as mystery Supernatural Six Primary Elements of Romance Love of Nature (looked to nature for inspiration) Focus on the self and individual Supernatural and Gothic tales – the irrational side of the imagination Romanticized the past (picturesque and exotic past – wrote about past times and places) Idealism and Optimism Nationalism Preview – the Devil and Tom Walker The German legend of Faust is the origin for stories that include deals with the Devil. Generally, what happens in stories that involve a character making a deal with the Devil?