Romanticism spawned in the late 18th century and flourished in the early and mid-19th century. Romanticism emphasized the irrational, the imaginative, the personal, the spontaneous, the emotional, the visionary, the transcendental, and the individual. Romanticism is often viewed as a rejection of the ideologies of Classicism and Neoclassicisms, namely calm, order, harmony, idealization, rationality and balance. Some characteristics of Romanticism include: emotion over reason, senses over intellect, love for nature, use of the hero and the exceptional figure in general, emphasis of imagination being the gateway to spiritual truth, and an interest in folk culture. Romanticism was preceded by related developments in the med-18th century referred to as “Pre-Romanticism”. One Pre-Romantic style was medieval romance, which is where Romanticism gets its name from. The medieval romance was a tale that emphasized the exotic, the mysterious, and individual heroism. This style contrasted the then prevalent classical forms of literature such as the French Neoclassical Tragedy. But this new emotional literary expression would be a key part of literature during the Romantic Era (Britannica). Literature during the Romantic Era was influenced by politics and major historical events and social reforms, religion, science, economics, and art and music.
Literature of the Romantic Era was heavily influenced by the politics, major events and social reforms of the time, the most notable being the French Revolution in 1789, which is typically marked as the beginning of this period. Many authors of the time period were attracted to the ideal of universal equality and the abandonment of monarchy in favor of democratic go...
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...en established, the events of the Romantic Era, such as the French Revolution, the change of the English urban economy, and the divergent religions that came upon the scene influenced the writers of the period. These authors were also affected by the ideology that came to be; the new belief that placed more value on imagination than on science and put more emphasis on emotion than on reason. A newfound freedom gave way to innovations in art and music. These factors all combined to influence authors, playwrights, and poets. The result was a great shift in literature. This shift allowed movement from the calm, structure of classical writing to the imaginative and emotional writing that is still valued today. All these developments led to a new season of writing, the Romantic Period without which we may not have a Mary Shelley, or the modern literature we have today.
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