Romania Literature

The spirit of independence advocated by the democratism of the Brǎtianu and Iuliu Maniu causes in the Romanian literature of the twenty years of national reintegration (1920-40) a continuous devaluation of authoritarian theories and therefore an incessant moral renewal. We aim more and more at a perfect social, ethical, aesthetic reintegration, at a total unity of the conscience of the Romanians and their participation in world culture.

Under the multiform impulse of the universalist Nicolae Iorga (1871-1940) the entire spiritual process of the early twentieth century took place. Never has the problem of the Romanian contribution to universal literature been raised more acutely and there is no ideological current that does not have its representative in Romania. Amorously interpreted Bergson, Croce, Spengler, Gentile, Bertoni, Maeterlinck, D’Annunzio, Papini, Pirandello, Baudelaire, Proust, Verlaine, Valéry, Gide, Eliot, Rilke, Tagore, Unamuno, Berdjaev, Esenin. Alongside the traditional French influence supported by Charles Drouhet, Italian culture is largely promoted by Ramiro Ortiz and Alexandru Marcu. The traditionalist or modernist poets escape from their schools to meet on the Dimitrie Cantemir (1674-1723) – Alexandru Odobescu (1834-95) – Vasile Pârvan (1882-1927) line who compostly illuminates the aesthetic sense of an ethnicism nourished by Dacoroman antiquity and informed to contemporaneity. Pârvan himself, a rigorous archaeologist, illustrated this direction with his elegant rhythmic essays Memorial (1923) where integral, learned humanism is harmonized with a juicy ethnic humanism derived from rich folkloric sources of a classical nature, since it is of Dacian and Roman origin and expressed in lapidary forms. G. Murnu, St. Bezdechi, N. Herescu, DM Pippidi and Dan Botta open new paths to classicism which in Romania offers local peculiarities enhanced by popular literature enhanced by O. DensuŞianu, Gh. I. Kirileanu, Leca Morariu, Al. Vasiliu di TǎtǎruŞi, I. Pillat, T. Papahagi, I. Diaconu, C. Brǎiloiu, Liviu Rusu, as an exemplary artistic achievement, worthy of being imitated and assimilated by poets. Significant for this popular humanism are the academic praises of M. Sadoveanu (Poezia popularâ, 1923), L. Blaga (Elogiul satului românesc, The eulogy of the Romanian village, 1937), L. Rebreanu (Lauda (t ǎ ranului român, The praise of the Romanian peasant, 1940). The popular bucolic poem Miori ţ a (La Pecorella), collected by V. Alecsandri in the first mid-nineteenth century, canto dell ‘ amor fati et artis, mobilized the scholarly research and activity of various thinkers and critics (D. Caracostea, G. Ibrǎileanu, DensuŞianu, Diaconu, Em. Bucuţa, E. Lovinescu) and impressed the imagination of the writers (M. Sadoveanu, I. Pillat, T. Arghezi, I. Teodoreanu) also stimulating philosophical research. Lucian Blaga has even determined in the unconscious of the Romanian ethnic group a “Mioritic space” (Spa ţiul mioritic, 1936) with which he created a new current. The seductive popular miracle arouses, not romantically but with a critical method, an orientation towards the Dacoroman heritage discovered by archeology, ethnology, philology, with careful stylistic studies enhanced by the disquisition of that spiritual essence called “national specific” (Ibrǎileanu), so that be even sensitized in literature as a treasure (Cezar Petrescu) or solidarity of the present with the past, of the earth with man (Iorga, Sadoveanu, N. Crainic, Rebreanu, A. CotruŞ) or as an unconscious atavistic, resurrection of the dead (Pillat, Arghezi, Blaga). This address has reduced the “thoughtful” neo-orthodoxism (of the magazine Gândirea, The thought) by Nichifor Crainic and the impressionism of the critic E. Lovinescu.

Leaving aside O. Goga and I. Al. Brǎtescu-VoineŞti who rather belong to the first twenty years of the twentieth century, of high universal value, we can consider Mihail Sadoveanu, who in his narrations lyrically revives the atavistic and rustic drama; Liviu Rebreanu, epic interpreter of peasant social and individual complexes; Tudor Arghezi poet of conscience, whose shrewd wit deals with even the most serious facts projected on a particular humanistic vision of the world; Ion Pillat, bucolic poet on classic modulations of the imperishable ethnic spirit and individual adherence to it; Aron Cotrus, singer of sovereign human activity, creator of economic or spiritual goods. Even the poems of Lucian Blaga, which enhance the legendary of things viewed as a mystery, they are considered by some critics as a very original artistic creation. In the critic Garabet Ibrǎileanu, Romanian literature has a very fine interpreter of the artist determined by the ethnic spirit.

Maintaining itself above individual and social shocks, only with the Second World War did literature become militant. The great literary figures of Iorga, Lovinescu, Minulescu, Brǎtescu-VoineŞti, Rebreanu, Pillat, Bucuţa, Crainic disappear, while other writers take refuge abroad. Mihail Sadoveanu, who despite having lashed out against Bolshevism (in the number of homage to Ion Antonescu of the Review of the Royal Foundations, 1941), becomes one of the main promoters of Russism in Romania. The new communist period finds its poet in Mihai Beniuc, a follower of Goga and CotruŞ.

Romanian literature

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