When one thinks of a novel associated with the term “romance”, the usual concept to appear in their mind is that of the works of Sarah Dessen or any other modern author whose books consists of a women meeting a man who then fall hopelessly in love with each other. The common idea of romance in literature is that there has to be the existence of a love story. However, romance literature is so much more than just your average story of the popular boy falling for the nerdy girl or the hundred year old vampire becoming entranced with the new girl in town. If you were to ask a scholar to name examples of romance literature, they would not dare to name you the books one can find in the young adult section of Barnes and Noble that appeal to the strange fantasies of teenage girls, but rather the works of William Blake who wrote about abolishing the slave trade or that of Mary Shelly who wrote about a hideous monster killing the loved ones of his creator. To understand what defines a piece of literature to be classified as romantic, one must go back to time where the parameters of such literature was establishes; the Romantic Period.
The Romantic Period began in the late seventeenth century and ended in 1832, with much controversy as to when exactly this period began. The proposed starting dates range from 1776 to 1789; each of the differ...
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...orated elements of what was considered romantic during this time such as the usage of the past, imagination, and most importantly nature, it is classified as one. Not only did she incorporate these elements into the novel, but she also combined them with characteristics that are clearly gothic, expanding the possibilities of both genres (Smith).
So what makes a piece of literature romantic? Most preferably for a piece of literature to be considered romantic, it would have ideally been published through the years associated with the Romantic Period. However, to be classified as romantic, the novel or poetry must convey the idea of nature being almighty good, convey the author and poet’s sense of emotion and passion, and give the readers a sense of wonder through the usage of imagination whether the story takes the read to the past or uses supernatural forces to do so.
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