Romanticism

   The romantic movement arose as a reaction against the neoclassicism of the 18th century. Its philosophical ideas, shaped partly by the ideas of the German philosophers Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762-1814) and Friedrich Schelling (1775-1854), emphasized the unity of the object and human perception as well as the unity of spirit and nature. God, the highest manifestation of spirit, could thus be found in nature, and the romantic genius was thought to be able to apprehend the divine and thus have a prophetic function. Romantic writers consequently emphasized the central role ofthe individual, the faculty of the imagination, and the relationship between truth, beauty, and goodness.
   The early stirrings of the romantic movement can be observed in the poetry of the Dane Johannes Ewald and the Swede Johan Henric Kellgren, who were active in the 1770s and 1780s, respectively. The movement found its first full expression in the work of the Dane Adam Oehlenschlager, while the poetic drama Lycksalighetens o (1824-1827; The Isle of Bliss) by the Swede Per Daniel Amadeus Atterbom is recognized as its greatest Swedish manifestation. Under the influence of the thought of Johann Gottfried von Herder (17441803), however, romanticism in Scandinavia soon developed into national romanticism.

Historical Dictionary of Scandinavian Literature and Theater. . 2006.

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