top-rated free essay

The Transition from Rationalism Tosentimentalism in English Poetry

By Abualbasher Jun 06, 2012 837 Words

This study is about the transition from rationalism to romanticism in the English poetry, which reflects the relation between art, literature, and poetry; in addition to the relation between language and literature. The researcher has used the historical method in carrying out this study. The study covers part of the English poetry composed from 1700 to 1835. The poetry composed in the Age of Reason, in which reason, order, and form have dominated all fields of life at that time. The poetry composed during that era was based on certain rules; and the heroic couplet was chosen as the metre to suit the town- life. In the Age of Reason, emotions, sentiments, rural life, nature and imagination were excluded as they had nothing in common with reason; the result was satirical and pseudo classical poetry. Alexander Pope is chosen as the representative poet of the Age of Reason. The researcher has focused on Pope's Essay on Man to explain the philosophy, attitudes, and the tendencies of the eighteenth-century society. The study turns to deal with romanticism crossing a bridge of transition. That bridge is the essence and core of this study; it is a transition from rationalism to romanticism. That transitional period is neither classical nor romantic; however, it has the characteristics of both. One end of the bridge is on classicism and the other on romanticism. The poetry composed in that era has features of classical poems in length, and romantic in content and metre. Thomson, Cowper, Gray, and Blake are the poets who exemplify the transitional period poetry. The transitional poets are classical in body but romantic in flesh and bones. The study illustrates their slogans, and ideas towards the English society's beliefs; thus, samples of their poetry are treated and analysed for proof, comparison, and justification. The transitional poets rebelled against classicism and rationalism paving the road for romanticism by turning their backs and pens to collectivistic, reason, and form and opened their hearts, ears, and chests to embrace nature, rural people, and individuals. Therefore, all symptoms of a new and a different philosophy were obvious by the end of eighteenth-century. Romanticism was considered deliverance to emotions, sentiments and feelings, and a liberator of nature and imagination. Romanticism stood steadfastly against the industrial revolution that had contaminated the emotions, nature and enslaved man. The researcher has given a thorough background about the romantic concept of poetry which shows their philosophy that poetry should be composed in the language of the ordinary man and woman or the rustic people; returning to imagination, contemplation, speculation, meditation, and brooding woods, mountains, country sides and all the aspects of nature. The romantics used the blank verse instead of the heroic couplet to suit their concept of poetry. The romantics have paid great attention to individuals and transcend their world of solitude. Wordsworth who believes in pantheism was chosen as a spokesperson of the period. Some of his poems will be discussed to highlight the abuses of the previous age, and prove their revolution against rationalism. The researcher has compared the classical, transitional, and romantic poetry; and discovers that there are similarities between transitional and classical poetry on one hand; and between transitional and romantic on the other. However, there are no similarities between rational and romantic poetry. BIBLIOGRAPHY

Alexander, L .G (1964): Poetry and Prose Appreciation for Overseas Students. Longmans, London. Burgess, Anthony (1995): English Literature, Longman, Essex. Collin, Collin’s York English Dictionary (2000): York Press. Compton’s Pictured Encyclopaedia (1961): Vol. 1.

Compton’s Pictured Encyclopaedia(1961) Vol. 2.
Compton’s Pictured Encyclopaedia(1961) Vol. 4.
Craft and Cross (2000) Literature, Criticism, and Style. Oxford University Press , Oxford. The Encyclopaedia Americana( 1959) Vol. 2, Encyclopaedia Americana, New York. The Encyclopaedia Americana(1959) vol. 22, Encyclopaedia Americana, New York. Encyclopaedia Britannica (1959) Vol. 14, Encyclopaedia Britannica. Evans, Ifor (1981) A Short History of English Literature. Penguin Books Ltd; Middlesex. Evans, Walter (1995) The Humanities Handbook, Augusta State University, Georgia. Fletcher, Robert Huntington (1918): A History of English Literature, http:// w. w. w About/classiclit.lbl-rflecher Gibbs, Ben R. (1959): Longer English Poems, Morrison and Gibb, London. Holman and Harmon (1986): A handbook to Literature, Macmillan Publishing Company, New York. Hornby A. S (2000): Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary of Current English, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Lancashire , Ian (2006 ):"The Solitary Reaper", Published by the Web Development Group, University of Toronto Libraries. The Norton Anthology of English Literature Volume 2 (1995) Norton and Company, New York. Perrine and Thomas R. Arp (1992): An Introduction to Poetry; Sound and Sense; Harcourt Brace College. Sanders, Andrew (2004): The Short Oxford History of English Literature, Oxford University press, Oxford. Sitter, John (2001): The Cambridge Companion to Eighteenth Century Poetry; The Edinburgh Building; Cambridge. Smith and Parks (1967) The Great Critics, W. W. Norton & Company, New York. Thornley and Roberts (1996): An Outline of English Literature; Longman, Essex. W. W. W

W. W. W lbl-rfleche -history-9 htm?
W. W. W the Victorian

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • A Transition

    ...Takudzwa Imbayago Dr. Jonathan Wright English Comp 1 6 September 2014 Paper1: A Transition After being offered a scholarship at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama, I had to report to school for preseason training. Preseason is supposed to be a time for coaches to assess players, and to build team chemistry. It is also supposed to test...

    Read More
  • Poetry

    ... English Poetry Explication April 9 2014 Biography Sir Walter Raleigh (1552-1618) was called a “silver poet of his time because of the way he did not conform to the poet writing style of the Renaissance era. He became fairly popular with Queen Elizabeth I and was knighted in 1585. But he fell out of her good graces when he secretly mar...

    Read More
  • Poetry

    ... Foundations in English Literary Studies Topic: Poetry (Seasons come to pass) Table of contents Page Question 1……………………………………….3 Question 2…………………………………..…..4 Question 3………………………………...

    Read More
  • English Poetry

    ...Unigranrio Romantic poetry Romanticism largely began as a reaction against the prevailing Enlightenment ideals of the day. Inevitably, the characterization of a broad range of contemporaneous poets and poetry under the single unifying name can be viewed more as an exercise in historical compartmentalization than an attempt to captur...

    Read More
  • Renaissance and English Poetry

    ...which dramatized whole history of human race (the Creation, fall from grace, etc.) “Shakespeare’s characters represent such a vast range of human behavior and attitudes that they must be products of his careful observation and fertile imagination rather than extensions of himself. A critic named Desmond McCarthy once said that trying to...

    Read More
  • English Poetry

    ...them to the grave, but they believe it to be such a lofty request that they are offering their tongue, ear, and everything else on their body. The rhymes produce the notion that the prayer should not be taken too seriously. 4. What is the chief symbol in Lorna Crozier's poem "Forms of Innocence" (Geddes, 675)? What does the symbol suggest ...

    Read More
  • English Poetry

    ...was particularly powerful as the colour green and nature, in general, are used to represent life and hope, something which would seem out of place in a battlefield meaning that the metaphor also serves as an oxymoron. Both poems consist of many enjambments. Structuring the poem in such a way causes the poems to gain a stop, start rhythm. I fel...

    Read More
  • Romanticism in English Poetry

    ...ROMANTIC AGE: The Romantic period lasts about forty years, from the French Revolution of 1789 to the Reform Act of 1832. Sometimes called the Age of Revolutions; the American Revolution took place in 1776 and its spirit of freedom affects the whole world. It was also the Reign of Terror, which began in 1793, the period of Napoleon, most Eu...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.