American Literature Romanticism


American Literature: Romanticism Essay, Research Paper

In American Literature, Romanticism came during the New England Literary movement called Transcendentalism. “Transcendentalism is a belief in spiritual truth beyond sense perception and material success.” It is said to be a theory that highlights the transcendent as the realistic reality. In other words, this is a philosophy asserting the superiority of the spiritual and transcendental over the material and experimental. “During the 1 9th century, Transcendentalism was a react ion ag~inst scientific rationalism.” Transcendentalists were against material success and discarded any control except that of the individual conscience. There are many qualities associ~’i1cd with Romanticism/American Transcendentalism; such as emotional appeal, suhiective viewpoint and a love for external nature. Other beliefs included private and subjective experiences the p()~er ol human emotions and creativity, and nature as a stimulus transtorming the individual a~ay Irom sclence/systems/reasoning. The three poems ~The Slave’s Dream” by flenry Wads~orill I ~)ngteII()~ ~The Rhodora” by Ralph Waldo Emerson, and “Alone” by Ldgar Allan l~oe will he analv/ed in relation to the power of human emotions and creativity.

I lenry Wadsworth I,ongf’ellow was born on lebruary 27, 1 807. in Port land, Nia Inc I Ic ~as the most popular of the “Fireside Poets.” Lie was “educated at Port l~ind Acadcm,\ ~iii~I II&)Il~~i(IC \athaniel hawthorne at I3owdoin College and then at flarvard niversit~.” Aist), he \~I5 the ()nl\ American to be given the honor of being placed in Poets’ (’orier in \\cstmin~tcr i\bl’c\ ;illcr Iii~ death. I ongfelk)\~ ~Tote the poem ‘~’he Slave’s Dream” which sh()~s man~ of the tran~LcI1dcI)Ialist belici;. ouc ol-those beliel;. v~as the power ofhuman emotions. Ihi~ poem ~le~cribc” ~I Ii~II~I-\\ ~)rkII1~ sIa~e ~ith a bare chest in the rice l’iclds. The bare chest s~h(ilizcs not only his beIng ~t ~lI\e h~~t ~Ils() him \\~iting to be beaten. ~~hippcd. and tormented O\ er and O\ er again by his ei1e~i1y – the \~ l~itc i~i~in. flere. I &)ngtL’ll()~ is trying to illustrate ho~ the \\ hite man asserts ~iIs p()\\cr *\t the ci’d ~)I~ l()I~g day. his emot Ions ()l~joy take o~er as he dreams 0 I his I~miI\ back iii his n~it \C l~ind ~) \ Iiie~i.

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