Romanticism, folk music, transcendentalism, poetry
This thesis examines contemporary folk music from no earlier than 2006, specifically music of the bands The Decemberists, Fleet Foxes, and Bon Iver. Providing a close reading of select songs, I prove that modern music is seeing a revival in the Romantic Era and Transcendentalist ideals and philosophy. The works and philosophy of Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834), William Wordsworth (1770-1850), John Keats (1795-1821), as well as Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), among others and their critics are all considered for points of comparison to the modern lyrics. The reason for this revival is considered in the conclusion chapter in terms of why there is a reaction against the technology driven culture in favor of one that romanticizes the thoughts and ideas of the Romantic era writers, their emphasis on nature, emotion, and the imagination which opposed the logic, reason, and technology of the industrial revolution, just as today there is a reaction to the alienation caused by technology.
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Murphy, Patrick D.
Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
English; Literary, Cultural, and Textual Studies
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Schwartz, Brett, "Romantic Ideals in Contemporary Folk Music" (2015). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 1305.