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The Quest of the Absolute
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summary
This eagerly awaited study brings to completion Louis Dupré's planned trilogy on European culture during the modern epoch. Demonstrating remarkable erudition and sweeping breadth, The Quest of the Absolute analyzes Romanticism as a unique cultural phenomenon and a spiritual revolution. Dupré philosophically reflects on its attempts to recapture the past and transform the present in a movement that is partly a return to premodern culture and partly a violent protest against it. Following an introduction on the historical origins of the Romantic Movement, Dupré examines the principal Romantic poets of England (Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Keats), Germany (Goethe, Schiller, Novalis, Hölderlin), and France (Lamartine, de Vigny, Hugo), all of whom, from different perspectives, pursued an absolute ideal. In the chapters of the second part, he concentrates on the critical principles of Romantic aesthetics, the Romantic image of the person as reflected in the novel, and Romantic ethical and political theories. In the chapters of the third, more speculative, part, he investigates the comprehensive syntheses of romantic thought in history, philosophy, and theology.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. C-C
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. i-iv
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. vii-x
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  1. Chapter 1: What Was and What Is Romanticism?
  2. pp. 1-20
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  1. Part I: Typology of Romantic Literature
  2. pp. 21-22
  1. Chapter 2: English Romantic Poetry
  2. pp. 23-63
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  1. Chapter 3: German Romantic Poetry
  2. pp. 64-94
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  1. Chapter 4: French Romantic Poetry
  2. pp. 95-114
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  1. Part II: Systematic Discussionof Romantic Aesthetics, Psychology, and Ethics
  2. pp. 115-116
  1. Chapter 5: The Beautiful and the Sublime
  2. pp. 117-147
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  1. Chapter 6: The Romantic Image of the Person as Reflected in the Novel
  2. pp. 148-191
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  1. Chapter 7: Romantic Ethics
  2. pp. 192-220
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  1. Chapter 8: Political Theories after the French Revolution
  2. pp. 221-244
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  1. Part III: Syntheses of Romantic Thought
  2. pp. 245-246
  1. Chapter 9: The Romantic Idea of History
  2. pp. 247-273
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  1. Chapter 10: Philosophical Foundations of Romantic Thought
  2. pp. 274-308
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  1. Chapter 11: A New Religion?
  2. pp. 309-336
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  1. Conclusion
  2. pp. 337-340
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 341-360
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 361-387
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  1. About the Author, Back Cover
  2. pp. 388-389
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