The Taming of Romanticism: European Literature and the Age of Biedermeier (HARVARD STUDIES IN COMPARATIVE LITERATURE)

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9780674868021: The Taming of Romanticism: European Literature and the Age of Biedermeier (HARVARD STUDIES IN COMPARATIVE LITERATURE)
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Looking at a broad spectrum of writers--English, French, German, Italian, Russian and other East Europeans--Virgil Nemoianu offers here a coherent characterization of the period 1815-1848. This he calls the era of the domestication of romanticism.

The explosive, visionary core of romanticism is seen to give way--after the defeat of Napoleon--to an expanded and softer version reflecting middle-class values. This later form of romanticism is characterized by moralizing efforts to reform society, a sentimental yearning for the tranquility of home and hearth, and persistent faith in the individual, alongside a new skepticism, shattered ideals, and consequent irony. Expanding the application of the term Biedermeier, which has been useful in describing this period in German literature, Nemoianu provides a new framework for understanding these years in a wider European context.

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