Romanticism Chapter

Length: 5 pages Sources: 1 Subject: Philosophy Type: Chapter Paper: #13309430
Excerpt from Chapter :

Romanticism

"Romance," "Romanticism" and "Romantic" are three related words frequently utilized rather loosely by literature readers and hence requiring some clear definition. The most important fact is these words are always written with the first letter capitalized to differentiate them from the words "romantic"and "romance" -- words which are generally used to denote erotically intensified conditions and events or love stories. While Romances commonly do contain love interests, it isn't a prerequisite for this genre. Similarly, Romantic poets don't just address experiences of love and love affairs; their poems revolve around the entire continuum of experiences of humanity.

Romanticism, meanwhile, represented an intellectual and artistic movement between the late 18th-century and 19 thcentury. The emphasis of this movement was powerful emotions, which formed the fountainhead of aesthetic experiences. Especially emphasized were emotions like fear, consternation, terror, and wonder experienced in the face of nature's sublime-ness. Romanticism elevated language, tradition and folk art, in addition to making a case for a custom- and usage- centered epistemology. It emerged in response to the Enlightenment Era's extreme rationalism and was inspired by the rejection of French aristocratic political and social standards during the French Revolution. Another influence on Romanticism was the uniformitarianism and evolution theory whose premise was that the answer to our present is our past. Therefore, a few Romantics adopted a nostalgic approach to Middle Age sensibilities and medieval age facets of narrative and art. The term "romantic" has been derived from "romance," representing a poetic heroic tale or prose set in a medieval world.

Firstly, Romanticism deals more with a particular person than the overall society. The Romantics are particularly interested in individual imaginings and consciousness. Romantic poets used the slogan of "Melancholy", and also sought modified stages of consciousness for improving their creativity. A corresponding drop in the power and value of logic was also witnessed, which was a clear response against Enlightenment era thought. With time, writers participated progressively more in supporting social causes. Owing, in large part, to the 18th-19th century Industrial Revolution, British society was experiencing its severest paradigm shifts ever. A number of early Romantics responded by yearning for a more unsophisticated, idealized past....

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Arthurian stories particularly resonated with their imaginings. Additionally, Romantic literature had an overt mystical aura surrounding it, which served to differentiate it from literature of other eras and movements. However, naturally, all Romantic storywriters and poets didn't display most or all of these qualities always (Rahn, 2011).

I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud' by William Wordsworth

This section will scrutinize one of William Wordsworth's most popular poems, usually a part of the syllabi of all high school courses in English.

British Romanticism

No other poem of Wordsworth's enjoys as much popularity as his 1807 piece, "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud." In order to comprehensively appreciate his works, not just this specific one but all of Wordsworth's poems, it is imperative to at least have a small glimpse at the principles of English Romanticism. English Romantics laid emphasis on the following key aspects:

• Mystical Elements' Beauty -- If one undertakes a literary analysis of any poem written by Wordsworth, one is sure to be able to identify a link between the supernatural and the natural. This poem also has supernatural elements.

• Nature's Significance - The most evident theme in "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" is nature's beauty and capacity of enabling man to get in touch with God.

• The Hazards linked to Technology -- While the poem in question (and most other Romantic poems, for that matter) does not explicitly mention technology, Romantic writers were afraid advancements in technology were starting to compromise mankind's ability of connecting with nature.

• Championing Individuals -- Wordsworth's experience narrated in the poem are unique and personal.

• "Ababcc" Rhyme Scheme -- The two rhyming verses at every stanza's ending serve to create a natural pause, which is consistent with that produced by the succeeding stanza. Hence, extra emphasis may be noted in every stanza's ending line; for instance, the 3rd stanza's ending line cites "the show," calling to mind pictures of daffodils dancing. This creates an enduring impression of Wordsworth's personal experiences in a meadow on readers' minds.

• Rhythm and Meter - iambic tetrameter. A rhythm resembling a song is created by the meter; one can envision the daffodils dancing to this rhythm. Further, Wordsworth creates rhythm by employing consonance and alliteration.

• The first line compares the poet to a lonely cloud (simile), showing him to be united with nature. This comparison indicates stupor or free floating. Clearly, the writer is strolling at ease when his attention is grabbed by "a host of golden daffodils."

• The seventh line also employs a simile,…

Sources Used in Documents:

References

Rahn, J. (2011). Romancticism. Retrieved from Jalic Inc.: http://www.online-literature.com/periods/romanticism.php


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