Feb 25 2009

Anti-Transcendentalism Essay:Explore Dark

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Hong lie Sun

Mr. Root

American literature

February 2009

Explore Dark

More than anything else, American Anti-Transcendentalism, more popularly know as Dark Romanticism, is really about a literary movement as well as philosophic conception. This movement includes music, literature, and movies. The Dark Romanticism is relating to darkness and terror.

Anti-Transcendentalism is related to Transcendentalism. Like Transcendentalism, the Dark Romantics valued, individualism and self-reliance, intuition over reason, saw signs and symbols in events, spiritual facts lie behind physical, they explore the dark side of human nature.

The poem “I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud”, he use the metaphor to put himself to be a floating cloud in the sky viewing those beautiful flowers from the angle of a cloud. “Which is the bliss of solitude; and then my heart with pleasure fills” This shows the nature can affect author’s mind, the nature stimulate the mind of author and give him relaxing and satisfactory feeling. “When the friend shows his inmost heart to his friend; the lover to his best beloved; when man does not vainly shrink from the eye of his Creator, loathsomely treasuring up the secret of his sin; then deem me a monster, for the symbol beneath which I have lived, and die!” In “The Minister’s Black Veil,” a Puritan minister decides to wear a black veil for the rest of his life to represent the universality of sorrow and secret sin. Another short story write by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the “Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment,” In the story, four people drink a magical elixir and choose the foolishness of false youth over the wisdom of age and experience. Both short story explore the dark side of human nature, “The Minister’s Black Veil” explore everybody have a invisible black veil, because their psychological effects of guilt and sin, they don’t want to shows other people their really face, so they scared of the minister’s black veil. “Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment” explores the knowingly violate the law.

            Despite their common beliefs, the gothic side of the Romantic Movement was concerned intuition over logic and explores the conflict between good and evil, psychological effects of guilt and sin, and madness and derangement in human psyche.

The novel The Scarlet Letter tells a story of sin and redemption and explores the evil of hypocrisy. “At the very least, they should have put the brand of a hot iron on Hester Prune’s forehead” This quote shows the evil think of the woman, when someone else gets punished, she just want to take pleasure in others’ misfortune.” Not thy soul,” he answered, with another smile. “No, not thine!” This quote shows Roger thinks about how to revenge Hester and pearl all the time, and disguises a doctor try to find out the adultery. Roger find out the adultery is Dimmiseble, and he stay with him seven years, everyday try to torment him, Roger is very jealousness and revengeful. Author perfectly shows the jealousness and revengeful of human nature. In Poe’s The Fall of the House of Usher, he introduces the foundation of two new genres, Science Fiction and Horror. Poe uses dark and melancholy tones in his writing to thoroughly describe the scene. For example, “I looked upon the scene before me-upon the mere house, and the simple landscape features of the domain-upon the bleak walls-upon the vacant eye-like windows-upon a few rank sedges-and upon a few white trunks of decayed trees-with an utter depression of soul which I can compare to no earthly sensation more properly than to the after dream of a reveler upon opium-the bitter lapse into everyday life-the hideous dropping off of the veil.” This passage shows the gloomy tone of Transcendentalist works.

Themes of explores the conflict between good and evil, people’s jealousness and revengeful, and horror, evil stories were very important to the Anti-Transcendental. Even today we can still how dark side of human nature still connects us. People’s dark side still affect our life, there are curl things still happens around our life.

Secondly people’s jealousness and revengeful is significant element in the Dark Romantics, in china, there was one college boy; he killed his entire roommates. Because his was revengeful, his roommate was laughed at him. He was a very normal and kindness boy, but his roommate were laughing at him because he wears poor, always did something that is stupid. In this case, his revengeful side (the dark side of human), he killed his entire roommates when they sleep. This is an example of Dark Romantics happens in our real life.

Thirdly, explores the conflict between good and evil is important to Dark Romantics. For example, In “Tell-Tale Heart” Poe creates tension through his first person narrator.  This narrator is obviously deranged from a nervous breakdown and, as such, the reader cannot anticipate his behavior.  Thus, there is an anxiety of sorts that develops in the reader who wonders what the narrator will do. In the story, the male person, he murders all the people in the story; even his favorites pet “The Black Cat”.

Dark Romantic themes still appear in stories, books, movies, TV shows, and comic books. Present-day horror stories and movies borrow images and themes from the original master of horror, Edgar Allan Poe. For example, “The Black Cat”,” The Tell-Tale Heart” “The Fall of the House of Usher” “The Pit and the Pendulum”, these short stories all relate to the Gothic theme, and we still read it today. These stories still appear around our life, it told tales of madness, revenge, and tragic fate. The conflict between good and evil and the effects of guilt and sin are major themes in current literature, popular writing, and television. The most popular example is: “Spider-Man” a story talks about the conflict between hero and sin. “Batman” same as “Spider-man” story shows how does the hero against the evil. These movies complete interpretation of the Anti-Transcendentalism. So, the Anti-Transcendentalism is appear everywhere, Let’s face it, to accept with it! 

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