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The Renaissance, literally ‘rebirth’ is a period roughly from the end of the Medieval/Dark Ages up to some time in the 17th century. It marked a new phase of history where there was a surge of interest in science, politics, philosophy and art and, paradoxically a rebirth of interest and even nostalgia for ancient civilizations and the classics; especially Greek and Roman. Humanism is, in its broad concept of focus on man’s place in the world – a shift from ethereal/metaphysical) is probably the artistic movement most associated with Italian Renaissance dramatists. So, the Renaissance was a kind of paradox; progressive in the spirit of technological and artistic advances along with the spirit of humanism, but backwards in the resurgence of interest in Classical works. The Renaissance was a kind of ‘neoclassicism’ in this respect but the actual Neoclassical Movement in literature did not come until mid-18th century; about 100 years or so after the Renaissance.
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