Road to Romanticism

Road to Romanticism

  • Author: Burton D Fisher

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ROAD to ROMANTICISM SURVEY OF ROMANTICIST EXPRESSION IN THE ARTS

Road to Romanticism surveys the entire Romantic era., from the Storming of the Bastille (1789) through the 1848 Revolutions and uprisings in Europe, and the post-Romantic period that concluded with the death of Richard Strauss (1948) and his Four Last Songs.

The survey deals with the oeuvres and goals of prominent Romantic artists, writers, painters and composers, and analyzes the impact of the Movement in England, France, Germany, Russia, Italy and America.

Romanticism represented a revolt against the social and political notions embraced by the philosophes of the 17th and 18th century Enlightenment; whereas the Enlightenment exalted reason, Romanticism revolted against reason and exalted subjectivity; it became an epochal shift of consciousness that emphasized subjective emotions, imagination and the primacy of the individual and basic human sensitivities and feelings.

Romanticism sought a new world order; its expressive ideology was intended to redeem society from the false illusions of Enlightenment promises that led to the French Revolution, Reign of Terror and Napoleonic excess that had led to despair, resignation and disillusionment.

Humanity was in pain, and the artistic expression of that agony within the genres of the Romantic spirit provided relief and hope; Romantic artists expressed their world-view in their respective oeuvres with truthful emotion and intense drama.

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