this essay I would like you to point out the defining characteristics of
Romanticism both in works from the 1800s and also their legacy in
modern literature. These are notes that I've given you already but I
have added a couple of clarifications (in italics) based on
misunderstandings i saw in your Discussion Board responses.
The characteristics I would like you to look for are:
* Romantics favor emotion over reason. In literature, that means you
might see some plots that are more focused on drama than on making
logical sense. Do not describe characters in the story
experiencing strong emotion or acting illogically. The point is that
the PLOT might be illogical for the sake of the READER's emotional
* Romantics invent the "shocking twist ending" that we might know
from M. Night Shamalayan movies or, if you're old enough, the Twilight
*Romantics invent the "pathetic fallacy", which is when they use
nature to emphasize the emotions of the characters. So for example
during a murder mystery you might expect it to be a dark and stormy
night. When lovers break up in Romantic stories (and in modern movies
that they influenced) it often rains.
* Romantics often set their stories in the past, or make references
to older times like the medieval world or ancient Greece and Rome. They
usually portray the past in a very positive light (forgetting its
plagues and massacres) and even today you'll hear people accused of
"romanticizing the past". Do not write about authors talking about their own younger years. They need to be referencing bygone eras.
* Romantics portray nature as a sacred, nurturing force. One group
of Romantics, the Transcendentalists, thought that to get closer to God
you should forget the church and dwell in nature.
* Romantics do not trust any institutions such as government and
organized religion. Many of their heroes are rebels, misfits, and those
who refuse to conform to society, like Hester Prynne from the Scarlet
Letter (a great example of Romantic fiction for those of you who might
have read it in high school).
*Romantics often hint that supernatural forces (angels, demons,
fairies, magic) are at work in their stories. But it's generally just a
hint. You won't see a dragon or a wizard pop up in a Romantic story,
it's more of a subtle or ambiguous suggestion.
Please identify each of these traits as they appear in the works of
Washington Irving, Lousia May Alcott, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan
Poe, or Herman Melville. You only need to find one instance of each
trait and they don't all need to be found in the same story. Please
provide some context as to WHY the character, plot point, or line you've
selected is an example of one of these Romantic traits.
Next, please identify one use of each of these traits in modern (20th
or 21st century) literature, along with context. Again, they need not
all be found in the same story. Modern literature may include novels,
short stories, movies, TV, lyrics, comic books, and even video games.
minimum of 3 double spaced pages (750 words)