Student Question

What are the Romantic characteristics in "We Are Seven"?

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The Romantic characteristics in "We Are Seven" include the exploration of complex character dynamics, as seen in the confrontation between the narrator and the girl. Additionally, the poem's focus on death and its Christian elements are typical of the Romantic era, reflecting the period's preoccupation with mortality and spirituality. William Wordsworth, a central figure of English Romantic poetry, exemplifies these themes in his work.

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Romanticism is a style of literature and visual art that was pioneered and became popular during the late eighteenth century and early- to mid-nineteenth century. However, the term "Romantic" can simply mean having Romantic elements, and not necessarily elements specifically from the Romantic Period movement. It is worth noting that William Wordsworth is one of the central figures of the Romantic era, especially in his native England. Wordsworth helped develop English Romantic poetry during the era, along with fellow English Romantic poets John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley.

With that context, Wordsworth's poem, "We Are Seven," has Romantic elements. For instance, there is a conflict between two of the main characters in the poem. The narrator and the girl have a confrontation. In Romantic literature, relations between characters are often explored, especially tensions and complex dynamics.

Another Romantic element in the poem is the subject of death. Many of the English, American and continental European poets during the Romantic era were obsessed with death, and examined the concept of death from various perspectives. Death and religious elements, namely Christian, are also closely related within the Romantic style, and this relationship can be seen in Wordsworth's poem.

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