• Romanticism had its roots firmly in the
Enlightenment but as a movement it was
much more diffuse.
• French, German and British Romanticism
each had their own individual characteristics.
• In Germany, the movement was a
reaction to French relativism and was
linked to nationalism.
• The overlap between
was most clearly
seen in France in the
person of Rousseau.
• In Britain the movement drew heavily on the
German tradition and the French.
• In the sphere of educational thought,
what the movement had in common
in all countries was a view of Nature
as a mysterious and unknown force
which could not be analysed, but
which man should engage with his
• If the Enlightenment believed that man's
reason would enable him to control his
life, the Romantic would regard this view
as an oversimplification of man and
• Man was directed more by his feelings
and emotion than by reason, though the
intellect should be engaged by them.
• While the Enlightenment looked towards a
better life for the future, Romanticism looked
back to the past in examining man's destiny,
with an emphasis on traditions, folklore and
• The contributions of Romanticism to
educational theory and practice has
• They include an emphasis on the use
of play in childhood; the education of
the emotions as well as the intellect;
a new way of looking at aesthetic
education and the arts; and the
establishment of the first elements of
modern child psychology.
can be said to be concerned with some aspects of the
The modem in contrast to classicism
A union of love, religion and chivalry
An escape from the Industrial Revolution
A bourgeois revolt against the aristocracy
A desire to soar into the infinity
An emphasis on individuality and self-assertion
the secret and inexpressible delight of the soul
• Isaiah Berlin would include in Romanticism:
the joy of every day nature, novelty,
revolutionary change, nostalgia, energy,
force, and will, a sense of alienation,
toleration of eccentricity, and the rejection of
knowledge, past, present and future.
• The Romantic movement
was responsible for
dramatic changes in art,
literature, music and
architecture both in form an
content, resulting in new
ways of looking at the
• The main difference between
writers of the Enlightenment and
those of the Romantic period was
in their attitude towards Nature.
The former saw Nature as a
universal mechanism operating
according to a set of natural laws.
When these were discovered,
man would be able to control his
own destiny. The Romantics, on
the other hand, believed that
Nature could not be analysed but
was to be accepted as a
mysterious, brooding force whose
moods were to be interpreted.