2 We will walk with our own feet. We will work with our own hands We will walk with our own feet. We will work with our own hands. We will speak our own minds -Ralph Waldo EmersonWhat type of values might American Romantics embraced, judging from this quote? Shun industrial progress, disliked factory products, were non comformists
3 Before we look at what Romanticism IS, we have to think about what it IS NOT! Despite the name of the literary period, Romanticism does not deal with sappy love stories.THIS IS NOT THE KIND OF LITERATURE THAT WE ARE GOING TO STUDY!
4 So what IS Romanticism?Romanticism is the name for the literary period that followed the Age of Reason (The Revolutionary Period) in America.Due to the fact that the country was now established, writers moved their focus away from political matters and revolutionary governmental ideas, and began to focus on other aspects of life (emotions, possibilities, imagination etc…)
5 Characteristics of American Romanticism Values feeling and intuition over reasonPlaces faith in inner experience and the power of the imaginationShuns the artificiality of civilization and seeks unspoiled naturePrefers youthful innocence to educated sophisticationChampions individual freedom and the worth of the individualContemplates nature’s beauty as a path to spiritual and moral developmentWhat would have been the subjects of painters of American Romanticism? What might be the topics of writing? Painters- wild landscapes, ominous skies, ancient ruins, rustic scenes
6 Characteristics (continued) Looks backward to the wisdom of the past and distrusts progressFinds beauty and truth in exotic locals, the supernatural realm, and the inner world of the imaginationEmbraced the antique;nature was an instrument of instruction and delight for the soul
7 A sample of American Romantic art- note the wild landscape, no hint of civilization and ominous clouds.A sample of American Romantic art- note the wild landscape, no hint of civilization. Ominous clouds
8 Types of literature prevalent in Romanticism… Short storiesNovelsPoetryEssays
9 Elements of Romanticism Frontier: vast expanse, freedom, no geographic limitations.Optimism: greater than in Europe because of the presence of frontier.Experimentation: in science, in institutions.Mingling of races: immigrants in large numbers arrive to the US.Growth of industrialization: polarization of north and south; north becomes industrialized, south remains agricultural.
10 Romantic Subject Matter The quest for beauty and does not tell people how to live their livesEscapism - from American problems. The use of the far-away and non-normalInterest in external nature - for itself, for beauty:Nature as source for the knowledge of the primitive.Nature as refuge.Nature as revelation of God to the individual.
11 Romantic Techniques Remoteness of settings in time and space. Improbable plots.Inadequate or unlikely characterization.Socially "harmful morality;" a world of "lies."Organic principle in writing: form rises out of content, non-formal.
12 Representative writers William Cullen BryantHenry Wadsworth LongfellowDARK ROMANTICSNathaniel HawthorneHerman MelvilleEdgar Allan Poe
13 BIG PICTURE.Romantic VIEW OF MAN: Focus on the individual and his inner world (imagination and emotions).
14 BIG PICTURERomantic VIEW OF NATURE: Nature is beautiful, mysterious, and symbolic. God can be seen in nature.
15 BIG PICTURERomantic GUIDE TO TRUTH: Intuition (inner voice or gut feeling) and imagination guides each individual to understanding.
16 Dark Romanticism or American Gothic Edgar Allen Poe with Hawthorne and Melville known as anti-Transcendentalists or Dark RomanticsHad much in common with TranscendentalistsExplored conflicts between good and evil, psychological effects of guilt and sin, and madnessKnown as anti- T because of their pessimismLike the T’s, they valued intuition over logic and reason
17 DarkRomanticistsHerman MelvilleNathaniel HawthorneEdgar Allan Poe
18 Father of American Literature Washington Irving (pseudonym. Real Name is Diedrich Knickerbocker ( )Proved that memorable fiction could feature both American settings and typesBecame the first American writer to achieve an international reputation
19 “The Devil and Tom Walker” Satirized hypocritical Puritans who used their social standing to gain wealthMade it distinctly American by setting it in New England in 1727This is when the Puritan belief that life should be devoted to God was being placed by materialism
20 Father of the American Short Story Edgar Allen PoeHe insisted the short story was a legitimate form of literature, not just the novelThis caused the rise of short stories
21 Rules of the Short Story Established by PoeThe effect of the work is the most importantIf the first line does not achieve an effect, the story is no goodEvery detail should contribute to the effectThere should be one single effect in a short storyIt should be read in one sitting because if distracted by everyday life, the unified effect cannot be achieved