Early Romanticism



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Historical contest (1760-1789)
George III dismissed the prime minister and tried to rule without his help. There were problems with the colonies. The inhabitants of the colonies were becoming unwilling to accept (NON VOLEVANO ACCETTARE) the British rule, imposed by the navigation acts of the 17th century that all American trade should be carried with British ship, there were high taxes that the colonies had to pay to Britain.
The American war of independence broke out, 1775-1783. George Washington was appointed commander-in-chiefs (COMANDANTE CAPO). On the 4th of July in Philadelphia the congress of delegate from all colonies [except Georgia], signed the DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE written by Tomas Jefferson a lawyer from Virginia. The declaration states that all men had a natural right to: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The British army was finally defeated and with the treaty of Versailles in 1783 Britain recognised the independence of his former colonies. George Washington becomes the first president (1787).

Industrial and agricultural revolution
During the last decades of the 18th century Britani underwent (FU SOTTOPOSTA) enormous changes and turned from a mainly farming country into an industrial one, in 1694 the bank of England was founded. There was money for trade and trade brought wealth.
The first changes were introduces thanks to a series of technological inventions, particularly of machinery for the spinning (FILATURA) and weaving (TESSITURA) for examples: the spinning jenny (FILATOIO MECCANICO), the cotton jinn ( SGRANATRICE DEL COTONE). James Watt invented the Steam-engine (MACCHINA A VAPORE). Many people were put out of work.
Rapid road travel and cheap transports by canals made the economic success of the industrial revolution possible.
The agricultural revolution saw an improvement in the breeding of cattle and farming techniques. Brittani was the first country where the industrial and the agricultural revolution took place.

There was a growth of the population due to:
-the disappearance of the plague;
-the productive use of lands with new techniques.
Home spinning and weaving were alternative or supplementary sources of income to agriculture.
The cottage workers were often unable to provide a decent standard of living for their families and were obliged to work for wages (STIPENDI).
There were two main classes, the wage-payers and the wage-earners. The gap between the rich and the poor increase, while it was difficult to see a clear difference among the aristocracy, the gentry and the middle class of merchants.
The great land-owners grew extremely rich thanks to the absolute freedom they had to exploit their land and to make money out of minerals beneath the soil (SOTTO IL SUOLO).
England was very rich and it become a “consumer society”, were the wish of people to imitate the improving standards of their betters was common to all classes. Small towns, the so-called “mushrooms towns”, [they sprang up (SORGEVANO) suddenly and multiply rapid] were built to house the workers.
Women and children were highly prized because they could be paid less and were easier to control. Children were so small that they could easily move in mines or repair machines. There were long working hours and appalling (TERRIBILI) living conditions.
Industrial cities didn’t have elementary public services : water-supply, sanitations, street-cleaning, open spaces.
The air and the water are polluted (INQUINATE) by smoke and filth (SPORCIZIA), the houses were overcrowded (SOVRAPPOPOLATE). Discipline, routine and monotony marked the work of industrial labourers, whose wages were very low. people died very youLiterary background

1. order, personal fulfilment, balance, symmetry
1. feeling
2. loft subject
2. reason is seen as a mental prison; it is to abstract
3. head
3. heart
4. respect of rule
4. sense-sensibility
5. respect of rights
5. humble and every day life
6. nature as logical and mathematical order
6. country as a place for meditations
7. objectivity of experience and mathematical
7. melancholy
8. the classics were model to be imitated
8. the suffering of the poor
9. nostalgia for the middle ages
10. death and tombs (graveyards poets)
11. nature is a living being
12. subjectivity in perceptions

Sublime and beauty
The most interesting idea about the sublime can be found in Edmund Burke.
1. it has its roots it the feeling of fear and horror created by what is infinite and terrible.
For example:
• void
• darkness
• loneliness
• silence
• tall thick trees
• night
• dangerous or poisonous animals
the mayor effects is astonishment, the minor effects are admiration, awe and respect.
It is mesmerising and leads to a paralyses of vision. It creates the strongest emotions that a man is able to tolerate. It is the horrible beauty.
2. beauty: it is linked with the pleasure, E.g.: a garden full of flowers in a sunny day. Light is beautiful. It is balanced and positive it gives calm but not strong emotions. It is reassuring and attractive. It does not trouble, it does not disturb.
Burke’s theory was developed by the German philosopher Kant. For Kant there are three faculties:
• sensibility
• intellect
• reason
the beauty derives from the interplay between sensibility and intellect, whereas the sublime derives from the three conflicts between sensibility and reason. Hence the mixture of horror and pleasure created by what is great and emphasizing man’s essential frailty. Kant states that the origin of the sublime is connected with the subject who perceives (PERCEPISCE), rather than with the object contemplated.
James McPherson
He was ispirate by the culture of a simple and primitive life, by Wolk tradition and ossianic poetry, a cycle of poem by a legendary Irish warrior called Ossian who lived in the third century.
McPherson wrote fragment of ancient poetry: this work is based on the suffering produce by war or by unrequited love, nature that is always wild and gloomy.
Thomas Percy
He found a source of inspiration in national Wolk poetry and publish reliques of ancient English poetry, a collection of ballad, songs, sonnets, romances dating back to the middle ages.
The gothic novel
• medieval: because it was related to the architectural style of the middle ages;
• gothic: meas irregular and barbarous in opposition with the classicism. Wild and supernatural in the sense of mysterious and fearful.
• It was linked to the concept of the sublime.
• Refuse of constraints and limits;
• Interest in intense feeling;
• Great importance given to terrify descriptions;
• Ancient setting: isolated castles, mysterious abbeys with hidden passages, ruins and secret rooms;
• A sense of mystery pervading everything;
• Use of supernatural things like vampire, monsters and ghosts;
• Heroines stricken with unreal terrors and persecuted;
• Terrifying man characters victim of their impulses who had no control over them;
• Exaggerated reaction of the characters to mysterious situations and events;
• Very complicated plots.
The gothic symbol of Wanderer, the vampires, the overreaches who seek knowledge reflect the wish to go beyond God, nature and human limits.
The first novel of this kind was “THE CASTLE OF OTRANTO” Orace Walpole. Than we have “THE MISTERIES OF HUDOLTHO” and “FRANKENSTEIN” by Mary Shally