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American Romanticism:

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Presentation on theme: "American Romanticism:"— Presentation transcript:

1 American Romanticism: 1800-1860
Light Romanticism, Dark Romanticism, Transcendentalism

2 Romanticism as a Journey
Away from Corruption of civilization Limits of rational thought

3 Romanticism as a Journey
Toward Integrity of nature Freedom of imagination Actually grew out of a latent idealism as expressed by Jonathan Edwards Source The Deerslayer N. C. Wyeth

4 Which are you? Romantic Rational Intuitive Nature-loving Practical

5 Imagination Beauty Truth

6 Big Ideas of Romanticism
Intuition Experience Individual Nature Ideal Intuition is more trustworthy than reason Personal experience > universal principles Individual is center of life; God is center of individual Nature is symbolic—leads to understanding of supernatural We shouild strive for the ideal—what is ought to be source: Skipp, Francis in American Literature

7 Characteristics of American Romanticism
Values feeling over reason Places faith in inner experience and imagination Shuns artificiality of civilization; seeks unspoiled nature Prefers youthful innocence to educated sophistication Emphasizes individual freedom and worth Believes nature’s beauty can lead to spiritual an moral development Elements of Literature (145)

8 Characteristics of American Romanticism
Looks backward to the wisdom of past and distrusts progress Finds beauty and truth in Exotic locales Supernatural realm Inner world of the imagination Sees poetry as the highest expression of the imagination Finds inspiration in myth, legend, and folk culture Elements of Literature (145)

9 A New Hero Young or youthful Innocent and pure of purpose
Sense of honor based on principle higher than society’s rules Understanding of the world is intuitive, not based on formal learning Loves nature Quests for higher truth in the natural world Elements of Literature 149

10 Legacy Lasting Effects of American Romanticism
Humanitarian reform Abolitionism Feminism Liberal religious movements Unitariansim Universalism Economic experiments Communal living (Brook Farm, New Harmony) James D. Hart, The Oxford Companion to American Literature, 6th ed. (572).

11 Light Romanticism Emily Dickinson Walt Whitman Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Some Keep the Sabbath Going to Church” Walt Whitman “Learn'd Astronomer” Ralph Waldo Emerson “Each & All” Focus on the inherent inner light of humans, the beauty of nature, and the perfection of the universe.

12 Dark Romanticism Nathaniel Hawthorne Washington Irving
“The Birthmark” (packet 131) “Dr. Heidegger's Experiment” (packet 124) Washington Irving “Devil and Tom Walker” (packet 93) Focus on the inherent inner darkness of humans, the perverseness of spirit, and the flaw of the universe.

13 Dark Romanticism Key Beliefs:
Romantics see value in unspoiled nature and shun artificiality (things that are not natural) Show the inner darkness in humanity-man’s potential for evil See nature as a powerful and punishing force Uses gothic or grotesque imagery (think dark or threatening)

14 Quiz: “The Birthmark” In a well-developed paragraph(s), discuss the four elements of dark romanticism. Use examples from “The Birthmark” to explain and further your analysis. Quiz is worth 25 points.

15 Transcendentalism Ralph Waldo Emerson Henry David Thoreau
“Self Reliance” (packet 67) “Each and All” (packet 66) Henry David Thoreau “Civil Disobedience” (packet 69) Walden Solitude (packet 80) Conclusion (packet 84) Built on the idea of the inner light, but believed that this was the divine spark, that humans carry God inside us. And because we all carry the divine, we are all capable of perfection.

16 Transcendentalism Immanuel Kant
“…concerned not with objects but with our mode of knowing objects." source

17 Transcendental Beliefs
the spark of divinity lies within man; everything in the world is a microcosm of existence the individual soul is identical to the world soul (Emerson’s Over-Soul) By meditation, by communing with nature, through work and art, man could transcend his senses and attain an understanding of beauty and goodness and truth. source

18 Transcendentalists Belief in the Inner Light Authority of Self
Walt Whitman's I Ralph Waldo Emerson’s doctrine of Self-Reliance Henry David Thoreau's civil disobedience, Utopian communities at Brook Farm source

19 Hudson River Painters Art as an agent of moral and spiritual transformation Kindred Spirits, Asher B. Durand, 1849

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