The Enlightenment: Neo-Classicism

Topics: Neoclassicism, Art, Literature Pages: 2 (325 words) Published: April 23, 2013
The Enlightenment: Neo-Classicism
The Renaissance
 | The Enlightenment (Neoclassicism)|
limitless human potential| humankind - limited, dualistic, imperfect| Values intensity of human responses| must limit responses by order, reason, and rules| Use of imagination to open up new, strange worlds| Distrust of innovation and invention| Expanding individualism| Significance of people lies in generic qualities| "Artistic ideals prized order, concentration, utility, logic, restrained emotion, accuracy, correctness, good taste, and decorum. A sense of symmetry, delight in design, and a view of art as centered in humanity, and the belief that literature should be judged according to its service to humanity resulted in the seeking of proportion, unity, harmony, and grace in literary expressions aimed to delight, instruct and correct human beings, primarily as social animals." COMMON or PREDOMINANT LITERARY FORMS: The essay, letter, satire, parody. Conventional poetic diction and imagery; realism; imitation of classics; emphasis on form over obscurity and mystery; emphasis design over detail; on the play of the mind as opposed to feeling; style was "polite, urbane, witty, intellectual art developed."

Neoclassical Period
(The Restoration)
Years: 1660-1798
Ø       emphasis on reason and logic
Ø   stresses harmony, stability, wisdom
Ø   Locke: a social contract exists between the government and the people. The government governs guaranteeing “natural rights” of life, liberty, and property  

Ø       satire:  uses irony and exaggeration to poke fun at human faults and foolishness in order to correct human behavior
Ø   poetry
Ø   essays
Ø   letters, diaries, biographies
Ø   novels


* emphasis on the individual
* belief that man is basically evil
* approach to life: “the world as it should be”
Historical Context:
Ø           50% of the men are functionally literate (a dramatic...
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