FRIEDRICH SCHILLER 1759-1805
Friedrich Schiller (1759 – 1805) was a German poet, playwright, historian and philosopher. He played a significant role in the birth of German Romanticism and Idealism, particularly for his distinction between naive poetry and sentimental poetry, discussed in an essay in 1796. This distinction is important not only in aesthetics, but also for offering a comprehensive evaluation of history. In fact, a man in harmony with his soul and nature belongs to naive poetry, while a man torn within himself and with nature belongs to sentimental poetry. However, this division will be healed and overcome, putting an end to the tension between the real and the ideal. The concept of aesthetic education is widely discussed in Letters on the Aesthetic Education of Man (1795) and in the essay On Grace and Dignity (1793). Schiller believes that the beautiful soul is one in which duty and sensibility spontaneously harmonize. This soul is superior to the one that must make efforts to reconcile sensibility with moral law. Therefore, education must aim at a harmonious development between the sensitive and rational parts. In doing so, the feeling of beauty has a fundamental pedagogical and moral function, because it arises from the free agreement of the faculties of the soul.