Definitions for modernismˈmɒd ərˌnɪz əm
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
mod•ern•ismˈmɒd ərˌnɪz əm(n.)
modern character, tendencies, or values.
a modern usage or characteristic.
(cap.) the movement in Roman Catholic thought that interpreted the teachings of the Church in the light of modern philosophic and scientific thought. the liberal theological tendency in 20th-century Protestantism.
(sometimes cap.) estrangement or divergence from the past in the arts and literature occurring esp. in the course of the 20th century and taking form in any of various innovative movements and styles.
Category: Music and Dance, Literature, Fine Arts
Origin of modernism:
genre of art and literature that makes a self-conscious break with previous genres
modernity, modernness, modernism, contemporaneity, contemporaneousness(noun)
the quality of being current or of the present
"a shopping mall would instill a spirit of modernity into this village"
practices typical of contemporary life or thought
Modern or contemporary ideas, thought, practices, etc.
Anything that is characteristic of modernity.
any of several styles of art, architecture, literature, philosophy, etc., that flourished in the 20th century
a religious movement in the early 20th century that tried to reconcile Roman Catholic dogma with modern science and philosophy
modern practice; a thing of recent date; esp., a modern usage or mode of expression
Modernism, in its broadest definition, is modern thought, character, or practice. More specifically, the term describes the modernist movement in the arts, its set of cultural tendencies and associated cultural movements, originally arising from wide-scale and far-reaching changes to Western society in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In particular the development of modern industrial societies and the rapid growth of cities, followed then by the horror of World War I, were among the factors that shaped Modernism. Related terms are modern, modernist, contemporary, and postmodern. In art, Modernism explicitly rejects the ideology of realism and makes use of the works of the past, through the application of reprise, incorporation, rewriting, recapitulation, revision and parody in new forms. Modernism also rejects the lingering certainty of Enlightenment thinking, as well as the idea of a compassionate, all-powerful Creator. In general, the term Modernism encompasses the activities and output of those who felt the "traditional" forms of art, architecture, literature, religious faith, social organization and daily life were becoming outdated in the new economic, social, and political conditions of an emerging fully industrialized world. The poet Ezra Pound's 1934 injunction to "Make it new!" was paradigmatic of the movement's approach towards the obsolete. Another paradigmatic exhortation was articulated by philosopher and composer Theodor Adorno, who, in the 1940s, challenged conventional surface coherence, and appearance of harmony typical of the rationality of Enlightenment thinking. A salient characteristic of Modernism is self-consciousness. This self-consciousness often led to experiments with form and work that draws attention to the processes and materials used.
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