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American Studies
Romanticism vs. Anti-Romanticism

Definition of Romanticism:

Romanticism can be viewed as an artistic movement or state of mind or both. It favors imagination over reason, intuition over facts. Talks of the "natural" man and the loss of innocence are common. Also common is the idea of nature verses civilization. Romanticism has an intense interest in and reverence for nature. It has an accent of mystery on strange and fantastic aspects of human experience.

Definition of Anti-Romanticism:

Anti-Romanticism consisted of two main writers - Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville. Anti-Romanticism focused on limitations and potential destructiveness of human spirit rather than on its possibilities. Many of these writers used allegory in their writings. Allegory is a work of literature in which events, characters, and details of settings have symbolic meaning. Allegory is used to teach or explain moral principals and universal truths.


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