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TELL me not, in mournful numbers,         Life is but an empty dream ! —     For the soul is dead that slumbers,         And things are not what they seem. Life is real !   Life is earnest!         And the grave is. Defining Romanticism & Transcendentalism.

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defining romanticism transcendentalism

TELL me not, in mournful numbers,         Life is but an empty dream ! —     For the soul is dead that slumbers,         And things are not what they seem.

Life is real !   Life is earnest!         And the grave is.

Defining Romanticism & Transcendentalism

slide2

“Disobedience, in the eyes of anyone who has read history, is man's original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion.”- Oscar Wilde

Americans excel at disobedience, reaction, rebellion. The same urge to rebel that brought us to The Age of Reason was also responsible for bringing that age to an end. Before we discover this era of Romanticism, let’s see what came before it.

The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere

slide3

What mental processes did the Puritans value? What attitude toward others did Puritans value? What attitude toward self did Puritans value? What attitude toward nature did Puritans value?

Prayer

Judgment

Denial

Fear

“Huswifery”

 Make me, O Lord, thy Spinning Wheelecompleat;      Thy Holy Worde my Distaff make for mee. Make mine Affections thy Swift Flyers neate,      And make my Soule thy holy Spoole to bee.      My Conversation make to be thy Reele,      And reele the yarn thereon spun of thy Wheele.

Make me thy Loome then, knit therein this Twine:      And make thy Holy Spirit, Lord, winde quills: Then weave the Web thyselfe. The yarn is fine. Thine Ordinances make my Fulling Mills.      Then dy the same in Heavenly Colours Choice,      All pinkt with Varnish't Flowers of Paradise.

Then cloath therewith mine Understanding, Will,      Affections, Judgment, Conscience, Memory; My Words and Actions, that their shine may fill      My wayes with glory and thee glorify.      Then mine apparell shall display before yee     That I am Cloathd in Holy robes for glory.

by Edward Taylor

The Coronation of the Virgin by Diego Velazquez

The Puritans believed that all knowledge was contained in The Bible. In the 1700’s, scientific discovery and the philosophy of The Social Contract, among other things, caused people to rebel against this belief.

slide4

What mental processes did the Founding Fathers value? What attitude toward others did the Founding Fathers value? What attitude toward self did the Founding Fathers value? What attitude toward nature did the Founding Fathers value?

Logical thinking

Social Duty

Self Improvement

Conquest

“To His Excellency, George Washington”

Celestial choir! enthron'd in realms of light,Columbia's scenes of glorious toils I write.While freedom's cause her anxious breast alarms,She flashes dreadful in refulgent arms.See mother earth her offspring's fate bemoan,And nations gaze at scenes before unknown!See the bright beams of heaven's revolving lightInvolved in sorrows and veil of night!The goddess comes, she moves divinely fair,Olive and laurel bind her golden hair:Wherever shines this native of the skies,Unnumber'd charms and recent graces rise. Muse! bow propitious while my pen relatesHow pour her armies through a thousand gates,As when Eolus heaven's fair face deforms,Enwrapp'd in tempest and a night of storms;Astonish'd ocean feels the wild uproar,The refluent surges beat the sounding shore;Or thick as leaves in Autumn's golden reign,

Such, and so many, moves the warrior's train.In bright array they seek the work of war,Where high unfurl'd the ensign waves in air.Shall I to Washington their praise recite?Enough thou know'st them in the fields of fight.Thee, first in peace and honours,—we demandThe grace and glory of thy martial band.Fam'd for thy valour, for thy virtues more,Hear every tongue thy guardian aid implore!One century scarce perform'd its destinedround,When Gallic powers Columbia's fury found;And so may you, whoever dares disgraceThe land of freedom's heaven-defended race!Fix'd are the eyes of the nations on the scales,For in their hopes Columbia's arm prevails.Anon Britannia droops the pensive head,While round increase the rising hills of dead.Ah! cruel blindness to Columbia's state!Lament thy thirst of boundless power too late.Proceed, great chief, with virtue on thy side,40Thy ev'ry action let the goddess guide.A crown, a mansion, and a throne that shine,With gold unfading, WASHINGTON! be thine.

by Phillis Wheatley

An Experiment on a Bird in an Air Pump, by Joseph Wright of Derby

During the Age of Reason, intellect, rationality, and social service were considered more important than emotion, imagination, and self expression. Humans, however, are not altogether reasonable.

slide5

Romanticism sprung up in Europe in the late 1700’s. By the beginning of the 1800’s, American philosophers and artists had adopted Romantic principles to develop Transcendentalism.

Describe this painting in as much detail as you can, then decide …

What mental processes do Transcendentalists value?

What attitude toward nature do Transcendentalists value?

Consider:

The colors (is pink a symbolic color?)

The setting (is springtime symbolic?)

The subject

The mood

The Swing by Jean-Honore Fragonard

what attitudes towards others are valued

Describe this painting in as much detail as you can.

What attitudes towards others are valued?

Consider:

What are the children doing?

How do they look?

What is the setting?

Where are the adults?

Are they being “good”?

What is the mood?

Who are they looking at?

The Hulsenbeck Children by Philipp Otto Runge

describe this painting in as much detail as possible
Describe this painting in as much detail as possible.

What attitudes towards others are valued?

Who do you think is portrayed in this painting?

What do you think is the artist’s opinion of the man in the painting?

What is the mood?

What do you think this painting might be named?

The Kleptomaniac

by Théodore Géricault

Does the title of the painting surprise you?

slide8

“A Psalm of Life”

WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG MAN                    SAID TO THE PSALMIST

    TELL me not, in mournful numbers,         Life is but an empty dream !     For the soul is dead that slumbers,         And things are not what they seem.

    Life is real !   Life is earnest!         And the grave is not its goal ;     Dust thou art, to dust returnest,         Was not spoken of the soul.

    Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,         Is our destined end or way ;     But to act, that each to-morrow         Find us farther than to-day.

    Art is long, and Time is fleeting,         And our hearts, though stout and brave,     Still, like muffled drums, are beating         Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,         In the bivouac of Life,     Be not like dumb, driven cattle !         Be a hero in the strife !

    Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant !         Let the dead Past bury its dead !     Act,— act in the living Present !         Heart within, and God o'erhead !

    Lives of great men all remind us         We can make our lives sublime,     And, departing, leave behind us         Footprints on the sands of time;

    Footprints, that perhaps another,         Sailing o'er life's solemn main,     A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,         Seeing, shall take heart again.

    Let us, then, be up and doing,         With a heart for any fate ;     Still achieving, still pursuing,         Learn to labor and to wait.

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

slide9

TELL me not, in mournful numbers,         Life is but an empty dream !     For the soul is dead that slumbers,         And things are not what they seem.

    Life is real !   Life is earnest!         And the grave is not its goal ;     Dust thou art, to dust returnest,         Was not spoken of the soul.

    Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,         Is our destined end or way ;     But to act, that each to-morrow         Find us farther than to-day.

    Art is long, and Time is fleeting,         And our hearts, though stout and brave,     Still, like muffled drums, are beating         Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,         In the bivouac of Life,     Be not like dumb, driven cattle !         Be a hero in the strife !

    Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant !         Let the dead Past bury its dead !     Act,— act in the living Present !         Heart within, and God o'erhead !

    Lives of great men all remind us         We can make our lives sublime,     And, departing, leave behind us         Footprints on the sands of time;

“A Psalm of Life” is considered to be a DEFINING Transcendentalist poem. In other words, it tells us what Transcendentalism is all about.

Longfellow wrote it in reaction to a defining moment in his life. What do you think he experienced that inspired him to write this poem?

The death of his wife and newborn child

Does that answer surprise you?

What attitudes toward self are valued?

Consider:

What advice does Longfellow give?

What is not the goal of life?

Whose opinion should we value?

Whose lead should we follow?

How are we supposed to know what we want?

slide10

Defining Romanticism & Transcendentalism

Define Puritan thought:

Consider:

What mental processes are valued?

What attitude toward others is valued?

What attitude toward self is valued?

What attitude toward nature is valued?

Define the philosophy of The Age of Reason:

Consider:

What mental processes are valued?

What attitude toward others is valued?

What attitude toward self is valued?

What attitude toward nature is valued?

With your group, create a true definition of Romanticism and Transcendentalism. Consider the values expressed in Romantic & Transcendentalist art and poetry.

Use your answers to these questions to formulate your definition:

What mental processes are valued?

What attitude toward others is valued?

What attitude toward self is valued?

What attitude toward nature is valued?

Write your Definition Here: