In the 18th and 19th centuries a new social class, the bourgeoisie, pursued a more personal, emotional, original and, above all, rebellious art and claimed identification with a homeland and common roots.
In Catalonia, Romanticism had clear political connotations: the Catalan literati claimed the right to restore the language, literature, and popular culture.
The first romantic poem in Catalan language was Oda a la Pàtria, by Bonaventura Carles Aribau (1833), but it didn’t become ingrained until the coming of Lo Gaiter del Llobregat, by Joaquim Rubió i Ors. In the novel, the first romantic works in Catalan were by authors such as Antonio de Bofarull and Martí Genís i Aguilar. With regard to the theatre, the exponents were playwrights such as Víctor Balaguer, Edward Vidal and Frederic Soler, known as "Pitarra".
The Renaixença shares with Romanticism the will to revive the national consciousness after a period of decline, and in fact the two movements coexisted together throughout the 19th century.
In Catalonia two factions that coexisted were: the conservative (Bofarull), and the reclamatory (Balaguer). They shared the desire to restore the Jocs Florals (floral games) as an instrument to promote Catalan socially and to stimulate literary production. The definitive push of this literary event arrived in 1877, when Jacint Verdaguer and Àngel Guimerà were awarded prizes.