Classicism has often been regarded in the twentieth century as a conservative, if not totalitarian, orientation in literature. Auerbach associates classicism with the rise of absolute monarchy and suggests that it threatened to undermine the humanist sense of historical perspective that had been developing in European culture since the time of Dante. Recent commentators have analyzed with great acuity the relationship between the allegory of love in Astrophil and Stella and Sidney's frustrated personal ambitions at court. The critical studies of French classicism written by Sartre and Barthes in the politically charged intellectual atmosphere of post-war Paris are well known. English resistance to classicism was, in part, a consequence of Protestant and nationalist rejection of forms identified with Italian Popery. Jonson's classicism was motivated in part by a calculated strategy of self-assertion. The idea of nobility based on 'merit' rather than on 'title' has classical origins in the Stoic philosophy.