Romanticism Essays Example
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Literature, Romanticism, The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Letter, Novel, Society, Writing
The term, ‘Romanticism’ refers to an intellectual movement that took place in Europe during end of eighteenth and mid of nineteenth century. This movement affected music, arts, literature and education in a considerable manner. It also affected contemporary politics in very complicated way. Romanticism is also considered as reaction of intellectuals and artists against industrial revolution in the contemporary society. A number of prominent scholars, painters, musicians and academicians represented and carried the flag of romanticism in different parts of the Europe (Rosenthal). Nathaniel Hawthorne was one popular author of romanticism era. This paper proposes to discuss romanticism along with discussing Nathaniel Hawthorne and his literary contribution in this era.
Nathaniel Hawthorne was born in Salem in the year 1804. His ancestors were puritans, and one of his ancestors, John Hathorne was involved in Salem witch trials. Hawthorne was an enthusiastic reader since his childhood. He used to read books and also started writing stories for various magazines since his childhood. Hawthorne started writing professionally and as a full time author once he completed his graduation. He wrote a number of stories and books that are considered important literature of romanticism period (Hawthorne and Wineapple).
Nathaniel Hawthorne belongs to the era of romanticism and his literary works represent dark romanticism. Hawthorne is the master of symbolism and his works are permeated with power of imagination as well as proposition. Nathaniel Hawthorne expresses his views comprehensively on literary theory and analysis. His theories and style epitomize his romantic spirit in a realistic manner. Hawthorne used the complex style that is a combination of meanings and commotions.
Readers get to know about darkness of romanticism through works of Hawthorne. There is a complex portrayal of repentance, morality, imaginations and sins in his literature and it becomes difficult for readers to understand his literature unless read the same with sincerity. Sometimes it becomes difficult to differentiate between certainty and fantasy. It becomes difficult to know the accurate meanings of his contentions for readers in many of his stories (Galeone).
‘The Scarlet Letter’ is one of his most famous works. This novel is considered as one of the most popular novels of the English language. This novel is a perfect literary work, imbued with portrayal of guilt, honour, politics, pride, vengeance, family and contemporary society. ‘The Scarlet Letter’ is also considered one of controversial novels of romanticism era. The use of symbolism and multiple interpretations by Hawthorne is amazing. The author also displays his sense and knowledge of history in his exceptionally written novel, ‘The Scarlet Letter’.
The novel represents era of dark romanticism and Hawthorne has tried everything in this novel that can make it adorable. Writing style, arrangement of words, tone and diction of Hawthorne is exceptional in the novel, ‘The Scarlet Letter’. At one place, the author writes, “Nevertheless,” said the mother calmly, though growing more pale, “this badge hath taught me, -- it daily teaches me,-- it is teaching me at this moment,-- lessons whereof my child may be the wiser and better, albeit they can profit nothing to myself” (Hawthorne, p. 91).
Hester Prynne is the protagonist of this novel. Prynne becomes pregnant and struggles for her existence and identity in the society. Keeping a single woman in the centre of the story, Hawthorne weaves a net of sin, repentance, vengeance, guilt and sin. The woman faces anger of the patriarchal society, but she is not ready to surrender. The society decides to punish Prynne for her sin and she is punished too, but she does not reveal the name of her child’s father. She is revengeful and wants to punish the person who is responsible for her sufferings (Hawthorne and Wineapple).
After observing the era of romanticism and works of Nathaniel Hawthorne, it can be concluded that Nathaniel Hawthorne was one of the popular authors of romanticism era. He represented dark romanticism and his works indicate towards his mastery of words, diction and writing style. Hawthorne represented the era of romanticism which is considered one of the best times for the English literature. Romanticism was an intellectual movement as well as literary innovations in various areas, and Nathaniel Hawthorne represented this movement in a true sense.
Galeone, R.J. "The Scarlet Letter." Pennsylvania dental journal, 71(4) (2004): 5-6.
Hawthorne, N. The Scarlet Letter. London: Interactive Media, 2012.
Hawthorne, N., and Wineapple, B. The Scarlet Letter. USA: Plain Label Books, 2005.
Rosenthal, Leon. Romanticism. New York: Parkstone International, 2008.