Romanticism: Late 19th Century

Topics: 19th century, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Charles Darwin Pages: 4 (1338 words) Published: July 23, 2002
Romanticism and Rationalism Romanticism began in the mid-18th century and reached its height in the 19th century. The Romantic literature of the nineteenth century holds in its topics the ideals of the time period, concentrating on emotion, nature, and the expression of "nothing." The Romantic era was one that focused on the commonality of humankind and, while using emotion and nature; the poets and their works shed light on people's universal natures. Romanticism as a movement declined in the late 19th century and early 20th century with the growing dominance of Realism in the literature and the rapid advancement of science and technology. However, Romanticism was very impressionative on most individuals during its time. Rationalism or Realism was erected during the mid 19th century. Realism are ideas that are brought up in philosophical thinking. The realistic movement of the late 19th century saw authors accurately depict life and it's problems. Realists attempted to give a comprehensive picture of modern life by presenting the entire picture. They did not try to give one view of life but instead attempted to show the different classes, manners, and stratification of life. The Rationalist recognizes that they must master their own destiny, using their unique powers of reason and the scientific method to solve problems. Such authors that represent these two eras are Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, William Wordsworth and Charles Darwin. Romantics believed that one needed to understand nature to understand oneself. In other words, only through nature could one discover who they are. Emerson shows this in his writing called "Nature". In the exert "…man beholds somewhat as beautiful as his own nature." This depicts Emerson's feelings toward nature; view nature as you view yourself. If one views nature as caring and compassionate, one will also see themselves as caring and compassionate. Similarly if you understand nature you will know yourself better. As...
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