The need for the rebirth of Romanticism in modern culture

Anna Malesiewski, Assistant Editor

The turn of the 19th century brought the rise of Romanticism – which, according to Encyclopedia Britannica, emphasized “the individual, the subjective, the irrational, the imaginative, the personal, the spontaneous, the emotional, the visionary and the transcendental.”

Romanticism was, in a sense, a movement against hardcore rationalism and physical materialism. Some of its main tenets include reverence of nature, the emphasis of emotion over reason, self-reflection, the view of the human as a creator and the view of transcendent notions as the gateway to wisdom and spiritual truth.

The modern era brought a decline in Romanticism and an increase in rationalism and emphasis on physical traits and possessions.

Why did we forgo Romanticism? What is so wrong with making life as beautiful and sentimental as you want it to be?

I believe that as a culture, we need to bring back elements of Romanticism, and emphasize them in our personal lives and consequently embed them into society.

Implementing aspects of Romanticism does not need to look like grandiose acts or complex pieces of art. These elements can be included in our daily lives.

There is so much beauty in the individual. We must start celebrating that beauty, rather than grouping individuals into categories.

There is so much to be seen, heard and felt. There are so many things to be dreamed and imagined. If we do not start romanticizing even the smallest details of our lives, what is there to live for?

By grounding myself and really taking in every aspect of my life and appreciating and revering its beauty, I have been happier and more in-tune with the world, the earth, myself and the people around me.

Enjoy every sip of your morning coffee as if it’s the best cup of coffee you’ve ever had. Take in the words and perspectives of your peers with an open heart and an open mind. Go outside and absorb the feeling of the earth under your feet, the fresh air in your lungs and the wind on your face. Read, and to glean knowledge from the words of others. Consume art, as much of it as you can.

Experience as many new and unfamiliar things as you can. Walk right up to the fear of the unknown and confront it. There is so much beauty in unfamiliarity and newness.

We are all Romantics at heart. We were made to feel, think and create. We were made to experience life in all of its fullness and goodness. Look to the Romantics, and look to the world around you.


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