American Romanticism1800 ~ 1860
The Pattern of the JourneyThe characteristic Romantic Journey is to the countryside, associated with independence, moral clarity, and healthful living.
American Romanticism can best be described as the journey away from the corruption and limits of rational thought toward the integrity of nature and the freedom of the imagination.
The City (Civilization!)Corruption Immorality Reason Logic Planning RoutinePoor working conditions ConformityNo imagination or freedomRomantics shun the artificiality of civilization and seek unspoiled nature!
Ahh the countryside! American Romantics contemplate natures beauty as a path to spiritual and moral development.
The Romantic Journey is about ESCAPISM from the dull realities to higher realms. The Romantics did this in two main ways: Searched for exotic settings in a natural world, removed from the grim and noise of the town/city. Sometimes, they found this in the supernatural realm, or in legends and folklore.
2. The Romantics tried to contemplate (meditate on) the natural world until dull reality fell away to reveal underlying beauty and truth.
American Romantics value feelings and intuition over reason and logic.Andplace faith in inner experience and the power of imagination.
A Typical American Romantic belief that reason and logic are limiting and imagination is superior is illustrated in this quote from Albert Einstein
American Romantics prefer youthful innocence over educated sophistication!
The Romantic HEROThe typical hero of Romanticism wasYouthfulInnocentIntuitiveClose to naturePure of purposeSense of honor based on a higher principleQuests for some higher truth in the natural world.
The classic hero of the time was James Fennimore Coppers Natty Bumppo.
There are 21st Century Natty Bumppo descendants all around us in the guise of pop-culture heroes! Dirty HarryRugged and lives in nature! Luke SkywalkerIntuitive and uses the force!Indiana Jones
Always on a quest for a pure purpose!
The Romantics valued individuality over conformity.Individual feelings and spontaneity were of greater value than logic, planning and using reason to get to truth. Are you my mother??
American Romantics saw POETRY as the highest expression of the imagination.
Poetry was the highest and most sublime embodiment of the imagination. What is sublime??? It is the ability to fill the mind with grandeur and power! It is how your mind can move beyond the imperfections of reality to a higher realm (spiritually).
Early Romantic poets, such as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, John Greenleaf Whittier, Oliver Wendell Holmes, and James Russell Lowell are some of the most popular poets America has ever produced. And while they kept a traditional style and form when writing their poems, their subject matter was clearly American: nature, love, family, God and patriotism!
American Romantics valued individualism and freedom of expression of the imagination; they did not embrace industrial progress. They felt that factories, grim and crime all found in cities was a lower existence. While not traditionalist in the sense of conformity, they looked to past for wisdom.
NO THANKS!!!!! Here is what makes me comfortable!!The Romantics look backward to the wisdom of the past and distrust progress!
Can you make a connection between each image and values of the American Romantics??