Romanticism and Realism are separate artistic periods that overlapped each other for almost a decade, and even though they are very different, there are similarities as well. Romanticism was an intellectual movement in the arts from 1790s until 1870s. It focused more on the individual, unfairness, irrational, creative, emotional, and the transcendental. Realism was also an intellectual movement. It began in about 1861 and lasted until 1914 when World War began.
Realism was an attempt to describe the world without idealization. The similarities of Romanticism and Realism are not as many as the differences, but they do exist. Both began in Europe and quickly spread to America. Romanticism was a result of the boiling of the creative mind during the Age of Reason while Realism took place as a result of the political and social issues. The Civil War in the United States caused the people of the time to not believe in the effects of Romanticism due to the industrial revolution.
However, both movements focused on nature and the effects on society. A focal point of each was the poor and working class and the injustices that were weighed down on them. Both Romanticism and Realism were unique in their own literature. Romanticism personified the following: emotion over reason, the senses over the intellect, sensitive examination of human personality and its moods, and focus on passions and inner struggles, Realism, on the other hand can be described as the direct opposite.
The Realist included the rejection of the idealism, demand description of ordinary characters and realistic events, an importance on characters from cities and lower classes, an avoidance of the unusual, sensational , and overly dramatic , and a focus on the moral struggles and social issues of real-life situations. These differences were due primarily because life had drastically changed for individuals.