Romanticism began in the early 19th century and radically
changed the way people perceived themselves and the state of nature
around them. Unlike Classicism, which stood for order and established
the foundation for architecture, literature, painting and music,
Romanticism allowed people to get away from the constricted, rational
views of life and concentrate on an emotional and sentimental side of
humanity. This not only influenced political doctrines and ideology,
but was also a sharp contrast from ideas and harmony featured during
the Enlightenment. The Romantic era grew alongside the Enlightenment,
but concentrated on human diversity and looking at life in a new way.
It was the combination of modern Science and Classicism that gave
birth to Romanticism and introduced a new outlook on life that
embraced emotion before rationality.
Romanticism was a reactionary period of history when its seeds
became planted in poetry, artwork and literature. The Romantics turned
to the poet before the scientist to harbor their convictions (they
found that the orderly, mechanistic universe that the Science thrived
under was too narrow-minded, systematic and downright heartless in
terms of feeling or emotional thought) and it was men such as Johann
Wolfgang von Goethe in Germany who wrote "The Sorrows of Young
Werther" which epitomized what Romanticism stood for.
expressed feelings from the heart and gave way to a new trend of
expressing emotions through individuality as opposed to collectivism.
In England, there was a resurgence into Shakespearean drama since many
Romantics believed that Shakespeare had not been fully appreciated
during the 18th century. His style of drama and expression had been
downplayed and ignored by the Enlightenment's narrow classical view of
drama. Friedrich von Schlegel and Samuel Taylorleridge (from Germany
and England respectively) were two critics of literature who believed
that because of the Enlightenment's suppression...