What are the characteristics of the literature of the baroque period, with reference to the work of contemporary authors?

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marilynn07 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

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Literature of the baroque period is full of metaphor, emblem or symbols, and hyperbole. The purpose of baroque period literature was to move the reader into an emotional state, to lift the reader out of the mundane.

Baroque literature was very complex very much like baroque art and architecture. This very same period in English literature is known as the metaphysical period which focused on the  "unnatural" or "adverse to nature" rather than supernatural. Either way, the baroque period in literature lasts from the end of the Renaissance to the beginning of the neoclassical period when reason and logical senses became the norm.

The Baroque style used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, and music. http://encyclopedia.stateuniversity.com/pages/2383/Baroque-literature.html#ixzz0GztcypUi&A

Some baroque writers include: William Shakespeare, John Donne, Sir Francis Bacon, Sir Walter Raleigh, Capt. John Smith, Theodore Agrippa d'Aubigne, Cervantes (Don Quixote).

The Roman Catholic Church encouraged the Baroque style of art, architecture and literature as a way to influence persons heavenward through the overly ornate architectural styles and art used in the church. This came about after the Council of Trent commissioned art that would appeal to the illiterate masses.

In modern use, the term baroque has little to do with the original time period. Rather, it means any art that is extremely elaborate, overly ornate or overly complicated.


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