Slavic Languages and Literatures | Russian and Polish Romanticism
R601 | ALL | Beinek


This course examines many definitions and hypostases of
Romanticism, “the shift of consciousness that cracked the backbone
of European thought,” as Isaac Berlin put it. We will focus in
particular on the Romantic literary and cultural movement as it was
practiced in Russia and partitioned Poland in the first half of the
nineteenth century, while keeping in mind the larger Romantic West
European and American context. We will approach the multi-faceted
phenomenon of Romanticism by exploring a range of its topoi: the
Romantic hero, emotion/feeling, love, journey/travel, memory and
remembrance, death, the exotic, the irrational, the ineffable,
national identity and political independence, the writer figure and
issue of authorship, ruins and fragments, the salon life and life on
a country estate, and folk/peasant culture. Ideas, texts, images,
and music by Pushkin, Mickiewicz, Lermontov, Słowacki, Gogol,
Pavlova, Krasiński, Tiutchev, Norwid, Zhukovsky, Baratynsky, Bunina,
Chopin, Byron, Schlegel, Goethe, Kant, Rousseau, Szymanowska,
Volkonskaia, Viazemskii, Iazykov, Lelewel, Ushakova, Olenina, and
others.