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Literary Movement: Romanticism 1800-1860


Literary Movement: Romanticism 1800-1860 How Romantic are you? True or false? When making big decisions, I believe it s best to go with your gut. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Literary Movement: Romanticism 1800-1860

Literary MovementRomanticism1800-1860
How Romantic are you?
  • True or false?
  • When making big decisions, I believe its best to
    go with your gut.
  • I love it when Im free to use my imagination and
    express creativity.
  • I believe that children are actually wiser than
  • Nature is a place of inspiration for me.
  • I like to spend a lot of time alone.

  • Partly as a reaction against rationalism,
    Romanticism had its beginnings in Germany, then
    spread throughout Europe and to the United
  • Romanticism is the name given to schools of
    thought that value feeling and intuition over
  • --Elements of Literature p. 215

Historical Context
  • 1803 Louisiana Purchase
  • 1812-15 War of 1812, Star-Spangled Banner
  • 1820-21 Missouri Compromise
  • 1830 Underground Railroad is organized
  • 1838 Trail of Tears
  • 1846 Potato famine in Ireland
  • 1846-48 U.S. annexes Texas war with Mexico
  • 1848 First womens rights convention at Seneca
  • 1849 California gold rush

  • 5 Is of Romanticism
  • Intuition - Inspiration from nature
  • Imagination - Individualism
  • Innocence
  • Other characteristics
  • Favored remote/exotic settings
  • (the past, the countryside)
  • City perceived as a place
  • of corruption
  • Emphasis on the natural
  • and the supernatural worlds
  • Divinity found in nature

Life through rose-colored glasses
Common Elements of the Literature
  • Poetry was valued as the greatest embodiment of
    the imagination.
  • Fireside Poets used traditional forms but
    introduced uniquely American subject matter.
  • Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson later departed
    from traditional forms of poetry.
  • American authors began developing novels.
  • American novelists sought to produce literature
    that was uniquely American.
  • The frontier gave America subject matter that set
    it apart from Europe.
  • A new stereotype developed the American
    Romantic hero. (Ex. Natty Bumppo, Luke
    Skywalker, Indiana Jones, etc.)

Famous Authors
  • Fireside Poets Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, John
    Greenleaf Whittier, Oliver Wendell Holmes, James
    Russell Lowell
  • William Cullen BryantThanatopsis
  • James Fenimore CooperLeatherstocking tales
  • Washington IrvingRip Van Winkle, The Legend
    of Sleepy Hollow
  • Transcendentalists Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry
    David Thoreau
  • Dark Romantics Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman
    Melville, Edgar Allan Poe

  • Painting Kindred Spirits by Asher Brown Duran
  • Features William Cullen Bryant and Thomas Cole

Tenets of Transcendentalism
  • Everything is a reflection of the Divine Soul.
  • Nature is a doorway to the spiritual world.
  • Man should be true to himself rather than blindly
    submitting to external authority.
  • Human nature is essentially good (optimistic

Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Born in 1803 in Boston
  • Went to Harvard at the age of 14 and graduated in
  • Became a minister, like the eight generations of
    Emersons before him
  • Questioned the doctrines of his religion and left
    the ministry to pursue a career in writing and
    public speaking

Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Considered the leader of the Transcendentalist
  • Emphasized trust in oneself and the experience of
    reality through intuition
  • Became a popular writer and lecturer, as his
    ideas were well received by intellectuals and the
    general public

(No Transcript)
Dark Romanticism Background
  • Authors Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne,
    Herman Melville
  • These authors transformed the European Gothic
  • Development of the short story as a trend in
    American fiction

Dark Romanticism Background
  • Characteristics of Gothic Fiction
  • Use of haunting, eerie settings and strange,
    chilling events
  • Romantic interest in intuition, imagination, and
    hidden truths
  • Reaction against the optimism of the
  • Exploration of evil and the irrational depths of
    the human mind

The Fall of the House of Usher
  • About the Author Edgar Allan Poe
  • Abandoned by father mother died when he was 2
    years old
  • Taken in by John and Frances Allan
  • John Allan was disappointed in Poehis literary
    ambition and rejection of business life
  • Left for college, got into debt, quarreled with
    John Allan
  • Pursued literary career without much success
  • Entered West Point Academy but had himself
    dismissed to devote his career to writing
  • Moved in with his aunt, Maria Poe Clemm

  • Yes, he married his cousin Virginia. She was 13.
  • Virginia died of tuberculosis.
  • Mysterious death
  • found on the brink of death
  • in Baltimore tavern

The RavenSummary
  • The speaker is reading in his chamber when he
    hears a tapping.
  • He opens his chamber door and sees no one.
  • He opens the window, and a raven flies in and
    perches on a bust of Pallas Athena.
  • He asks the raven its name. The response in
    Nevermore. The speaker, fascinated, wheels his
    chair in front of the raven.

The Raven Summary(continued)
  • He asks questions about his sorrow and his
    beloved, eventually asking if he will see his
    love Lenore again. The response is always
  • The speaker orders the raven to leave, but the
    raven remains perched above the chamber door.
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