What is the difference between Romanticism and Transcendentalism?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Certainly these two literary movements share many similarities, however both are distinctly different enough to warrant their separate grouping. Romanticism values feeling and intuition over reason, places faith in inner experience and the power of the imagination, shuns the artificiality of civilisation and seeks unspoiled nature, prefers youth innocence to educated sophistication, champions individual freedom and the worth of the individual and reflects on nature's beauty as a path to spiritual and moral development.

A Transcendental view of the world, on the other hand, believes that everything in the world, including human beings, is a reflection of the Divine Soul, it argues that the physical facts of the natural world are a doorway to the spiritual or ideal world, it believe that people can use their intuition to behold God's spirit revealed in nature or in their own souls, it believes strongly in self-reliance and individualism, and finally it champions spontaneous feelings and intuition over deliberate rationality.

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