The Introduction explains the book’s title and terms of reference and situates it within contemporary Romantic scholarship and methodology. It distinguishes the different priorities demanded of critical understanding of European Romanticism compared to British Romanticism in order to find a history explaining why Anglophone criticism tends to believe that Romantic writers internalize and sublimate politics. Instead it is argued that they disseminate and refigure poetic creativity in innovatory political thinking. This is part of Romanticism’s comparative impulse to diversify Kantian philosophy’s delegation of the task of capturing essential human reflections to aesthetics through poetic invention’s reinvention of itself in different forms. The crucial historical example of the Congress of Vienna Then follows a brief discussion of each chapter’s content and place in the overall argument.
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