Major essay writers romantic period

It was a dramatic shift in human understanding one that would eventually lead to the Modernist and Post-Modernist periods and inspire the thinking of later writers such as Williams and Ginsberg. However this fundamental shift in personal values and beliefs may have in part been sculpted by the industrial revolution itself. It could be argued that people who had previously left the countryside to work in the cities had essentially created a living space in the countryside that enabled Romantic style poets and artists to re-evaluate the importance and beauty of the natural landscape that surrounded them.

Wordsworth in his preface to Lyrical Ballads attempts to explain to his readers the techniques he employs when writing his poetry. Wordsworth p. Wordsworth believed that powerful emotions recalled after the event which inspired them are in fact a truer representation of the feelings that were experienced at the time. Nature itself became an expression of art for the romantics, they believed in the divine beauty of the countryside and marked a step away form forms of industrialisation, including industrialised civilisation, mechanical language and a return to nature as a naturally combined spiritual and organic pursuit.

When we examine this statement there would appear to be two factors that must be acknowledged, firstly the image of life that Shelly refers to is not the image of life appertained to by for instance neoclassical painters whose rigidity and unemotional form of art was not intended to include symbolism, inventiveness, self-expression or personal inspiration. He believed that to describe an image solely as it exists in the mind of the observer was to describe it in such a way that it was automatically recognisable in its truest form in the mind of the reader.

Shelly inevitably suggests that there is a universal truth to poetry that recognises a familiarity between what is being described by the poet and the personal day to day experiences of the reader. Shelly English Essays Although Keats does not in any great depth discuss instances in which negative capability exists other than referencing Shakespeare, we are able to establish from this statement an interpretation of what he was talking about.


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With this in mind Keats believed that poetry and all art was devoid of rationality. Fingerprint Women's Writing.

Romantic Period. Women Writers. Mary Shelley. Maria Edgeworth. Literary History. Literary Genres. Travel Writing. There is more wool and flax in the fields. There are new lands, new men, new thoughts. Let us demand our own works and laws and worship. If the red slayer think he slay Or the slain think he is slain, They know not well the subtle ways I keep, and pass, and turn again.

Far or forgot to me is near Shadow and sunlight are the same; The vanished gods to me appear; And one to me are shame and fame. They reckon ill who leave me out; When me they fly, I am the wings; I am the doubter and the doubt, And I the hymn the Brahmin sings The strong gods pine for my abode, And pine in vain the sacred Seven, But thou, meek lover of the good!

Early American and Colonial Period: Before 1776

Find me, and turn thy back on heaven. Henry David Thoreau, of French and Scottish descent, was born in Concord and made it his permanent home. From a poor family, like Emerson, he worked his way through Harvard. In essence, he made living his career.

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A nonconformist, he attempted to live his life at all times according to his rigorous principles. This attempt was the subject of many of his writings. In Walden , Thoreau consciously shapes this time into one year, and the book is carefully constructed so the seasons are subtly evoked in order. Both poetry and philosophy, this long poetic essay challenges the reader to examine his or her life and live it authentically.

The building of the cabin, described in great detail, is a concrete metaphor for the careful building of a soul.

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Romantic Prose Characteristics

The resemblance is not accidental: like Emerson and Whitman, he was influenced by Hindu and Buddhist philosophy. His most treasured possession was his library of Asian classics, which he shared with Emerson. His eclectic style draws on Greek and Latin classics and is crystalline, punning, and as richly metaphorical as the English metaphysical writers of the late Renaissance. Thoreau felt that his contribution would be to renew a sense of the wilderness in language.

His journal has an undated entry from English literature from the days of the minstrels to the Lake Poets, Chaucer and Spenser and Shakespeare and Milton included, breathes no quite fresh and in this sense, wild strain. It is an essentially tame and civilized literature, reflecting Greece and Rome. Her wilderness is a greenwood, her wildman a Robin Hood. There is plenty of genial love of nature in her poets, but not so much of nature herself. Her chronicles inform us when her wild animals, but not the wildman in her, became extinct.

There was need of America. Thoreau is the most attractive of the Transcendentalists today because of his ecological consciousness, do-it-yourself independence, ethical commitment to abolitionism, and political theory of civil disobedience and peaceful resistance. His ideas are still fresh, and his incisive poetic style and habit of close observation are still modern. Whitman was largely self-taught; he left school at the age of 11 to go to work, missing the sort of traditional education that made most American authors respectful imitators of the English.

The enthusiastic praise that Emerson and a few others heaped on this daring volume confirmed Whitman in his poetic vocation, although the book was not a popular success. Leaves of Grass is as vast, energetic, and natural as the American continent; it was the epic generations of American critics had been calling for, although they did not recognize it.

My ties and ballasts leave me.

The Romantic Periods Trends English Literature Essay

I skirt sierras, my palms cover continents I am afoot with my vision. The poem bulges with myriad concrete sights and sounds. I am the hounded slave, I wince at the bite of the dogs…. More than any other writer, Whitman invented the myth of democratic America. The United States is essentially the greatest poem. He invented a timeless America of the free imagination, peopled with pioneering spirits of all nations. I celebrate myself, and sing myself, And what I assume you shall assume, For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

He was enormously innovative. In their time, the Boston Brahmins as the patrician, Harvard-educated class came to be called supplied the most respected and genuinely cultivated literary arbiters of the United States.

Modernism & English Literature

Their lives fitted a pleasant pattern of wealth and leisure directed by the strong New England work ethic and respect for learning. Late in life they sometimes became ambassadors or received honorary degrees from European institutions. Most of them travelled or were educated in Europe: They were familiar with the ideas and books of Britain, Germany, and France, and often Italy and Spain. The writings of the Brahmin poets fused American and European traditions and sought to create a continuity of shared Atlantic experience.

These scholar-poets attempted to educate and elevate the general populace by introducing a European dimension to American literature. Ironically, their overall effect was conservative. By insisting on European things and forms, they retarded the growth of a distinctive American consciousness.

Longfellow, professor of modern languages at Harvard, was the best-known American poet of his day. He was responsible for the misty, ahistorical, legendary sense of the past that merged American and European traditions. James Russell Lowell, who became professor of modern languages at Harvard after Longfellow retired, is the Matthew Arnold of American literature. He began as a poet but gradually lost his poetic ability, ending as a respected critic and educator.