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Online Textbook for History 1112

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Religion and spirituality have been central to many peoples and cultures; they influence behaviors and reactions to external events. This lesson discusses major religious events in the lives of everyday persons from approximately 1700-1900.
The Romantic Movement gave to the world memorable art, music, and literature, as well as changing ideas about family life and the structure of society in general. This lesson gives attention to the major works of the Romantic period while also examining "new" ideas about human rights that would gradually change social mores and values in western society. The lesson focuses most intently on the years 1800-1850, with references to related themes of the late 18th century and early 20th century.


Learning Objectives


Upon successful completion of this lesson, students should be able to:

  • Examine the place of the three monotheistic religions (Christianity, Judaism, and Islam) in the daily lives of people across Europe and the Middle East from 1648 to 1900.
  • Describe how different religions and denominations responded to important events in science, such as the presentation of Darwin’s theories, and the formal founding of social sciences such as psychology, sociology, and anthropology.
  • Explain how religion and the national state co-existed in nations such as Britain, France, Russia, and Germany.
  • Detail the reactions of non-Western cultures, who practiced different religions, to the missionary work of men and women from Europe.
  • Detail how Romanticism impacted the lives of children and the realm of formal education.
  • Explain how the Romantic period was, in essence, a rebellion against the Enlightenment and the stress on reason and rationality.
  • Describe how Romanticism led to a revival of “folk art” and culture which became important to the rise of nationalism.
  • Identify the specific characteristics of the Romantic movement across visual art, music, and literature.

Terms to Know

  • "Final Solution"
  • Adolph Eichmann
  • Alexandre Dumas
  • Ambrose Bierce
  • August Franke
  • Balfour Declaration
  • Ballads
  • Brothers Grimm
  • Chopin
  • Classicism
  • Conservative Judaism
  • Covenant
  • Deism
  • Edgar Allen Poe
  • Eugene Delacroix
  • Folk movements
  • Friedrich Froebel
  • Friedrich von Schiller
  • George Whitefield
  • Goethe
  • Gothic romance
  • Goya
  • Henry David Thoreau
  • Isaac Backus
  • JM Waterhouse
  • John Wesley
  • Kabbalah
  • Kemal Ataturk
  • Ludwig von Beethoven
  • Manifest Destiny
  • Mary Shelley
  • Moravians (Bohemian Brethren)
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Orthodox Judaism
  • Oxford Group
  • Pestalozzi
  • Pietist movement
  • Pope Pius IX
  • Rabbinism
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Reform Judaism
  • Religion
  • Richard Wagner
  • Rimsky-Korsakov
  • Romanticism
  • Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • Storm and stress
  • Tchaikovsky
  • The Bronte Sisters
  • Theodor Herzl
  • Treaty of Westphalia (1648)
  • Victor Hugo
  • Voluntaryism
  • Walt Whitman
  • Walter Scott
  • William Blake
  • William Cary
  • William Wilburforce
  • Zionist movement

Thought Questions 

1. Explain the events that led to the founding of Israel and the formal independence of the nation in 1948. What role did Great Britain play in the dividing of the land in this part of the Middle East?

2. Describe the various social reform movements of the 19th-century Anglican church and how these affected life for people living in Great Britain.

3. Detail the changes in Judaism from the Middle Ages through the "emancipation" period, explaining the divisions of Judaism that emerged after this time.

4. How did colonialism affect the Islamic nations of the Middle East? What are some of the repercussions of rapid economic growth in the Middle East today?

5. Why was Romanticism a sort of rebellion against Classicism? How did the rebellion manifest in works of artists, writers, and composers?

6. In what ways did education change during the Romantic era, especially related to the view of adults on children?

Discussion Questions

Uses online links for reading plus PowerPoints

1. What type of speech does Wilberforce deliver to Parliament on slavery? Look at his words. How does he use an emotional appeal to provoke his listeners? 

2. What is Herzl asking for in his speech (list specifics)? Why does he think it is necessary to have a Jewish homeland? 

3. Why was there a move towards modernism in some Islamic states in the 19th century? Discuss specifically the reforms of Turkey and Persia (Iran) in your answer.

4. Visit the webpage for Romantic-era music via the link found in the syllabus. Listen to the three excerpts of recordings from the works of Beethoven, Schubert, and Wagner. Which one, to you, most exemplifies "Romanticism" as described/defined in the PowerPoint? State your reasons with specific examples. 

5. Visit the link to Romantic writing (there are fine arts there as well) at the British Library via the link in your syllabus. Choose two of the following authors from the website: P.B. Shelley ("The Masque of Anarchy"), Wordsworth ("Lyrical Ballads"), Blake ("Songs of Innocence and Experience"), Coleridge ("A Walking Tour of Cumbria"), Radcliffe ("The Mysteries of Udolpho"), and Keats ("Ode on a Grecian Urn"). Compare and contrast the two works/authors. Do they fully represent Romanticism? How? Some of these are "early" Romantics, while others are "later" Romantics. Do you notice any differences? 

6. View the selections of Romantic-era paintings from the Metropolitan Museum of Art via the link in your syllabus. (Note that many of them are by Delacroix). Which painting is your favorite, and whyHow does the painting appeal to your senses or possibly your understanding of the natural world?


Further Explorations

The following websites may be useful to you in finding terms, studying for exams, and expanding your knowledge of this lesson's content.

Please note that inclusion of these websites does not imply the instructor's promotion or dissension of any particular faith or creed. These websites are for information purposes only.

NOTE: From time to time, these web pages may "disappear." Please send an email to if you find broken links, so they may be replaced.