Ayn Rand classified her novels as belonging to the Romantic school of art. But what is a school of art, and what is the essence of Romanticism, as opposed to other schools? What is the Romantic artist’s distinctive end, and what is his distinctive method? These are the overall questions addressed in this course, which throughout uses the works of Ayn Rand as illustrative material.
Subsidiary topics include: the role of plot in Romantic fiction; the nature of Romantic drama; the Romantic approach to literary characterization; the function of abstract themes in Romantic works; the individualism of the Romantic artist’s projection of values; the Romantic use of imagination; the objectivity of Romanticism’s goals and methods.