Literary Romanticism : Literary Realism

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Literary Romanticism in Contrast to Literary Realism

Romanticism is a movement in the arts and literature that originated in the late 18th century, emphasizing inspiration, subjectivity, and the primacy of the individual. This particular movement focused on imagination and the interpretation of imagination by the individual. Romanticism primarily used symbolism to represent a much broader meaning than the object itself. In contrast, Realism attempts to describe life without idealization or romantic subjectivity, or in other words, it is fiction devoted to the accurate representations of American lives and shifts in culture. This particular movement focused on the criticisms of social conditions and used characters as the center of interests as opposed to a plot. In addition, Realism used objects or figures as impartial or objective representations in an honest, matter of fact style. Authors from both of these literary movements used observations of surroundings in societies, or the world as a whole, to convey messages in their works, that unify them. In Edgar Allen Poe’s Raven, which is from the Romanticism movement, Poe uses the crow as the symbolization to convey his message, through the narrator, of the narrator’s surroundings as well as the narrator’s state of mind (imagination). Poe exemplifies this as follows:
Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December;
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; –
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