Volume 6 Issue 2 FALL 2020

1 6 S p i r i t ua l i t y S t u d i e s 6 - 2 Fa l l 2 0 2 0 Romanticism and Religious Crisis: Schleiermacher, Poetry, Peregrinatio vitae Received July 15, 2020 Revised September 6, 2020 Accepted September 9, 2020 Key words Romanticism, poetry, religion, crisis, Schleiermacher Janneke van der Leest Romanticism marks a turning point in the history of modern religiosity, dealing on the one hand with Enlightenment’s religion critique and with the position of the modern subject which pushes itself forward (at the expense of God) as the central point that guarantees knowledge of the world. On the other hand, the Romantics try to give religion a renewed context and meaning. The main questions I consider are: what renewed context for religion is created by the Romantic Movement; what is the meaning of religion for the Romantics and what meaning can religion offer them? After reading passages in Schleiermacher in order to find out what the romantic crisis of meaning concerning religion is about, I will illustrate how those romantic ideas find their literary expression in romantic poetry. This poetry turns out to be more than a simple application of the romantic theoretical search for meaning. Furthermore, via romantic poetry can be noticed that the Romantics experience the same kind of struggles concerning ‘religion’ and ‘the crisis of its meaning’ as we do today.

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