Modernism: (and Postmodernism) is an artistic movement in response to the discontinuities, illogicalities, and fragmentation of culture and society in the present day. It refers to the tendency to experiment in radical new techniques, themes, moods, and structures. Atonalism in music, surrealism in painting*, vers libre in poetry, functionalism in architecture (Frank Lloyd Write) etc. It marks a change in they way we experience the world and how we perceive it. It is an attempt to create a language for the times. Modernism is a lose term and is not limited to a specific time period.
*Surrealism- a view that stems from and reflects the disruptions of war and tries to reconstitute the familiar, recognizable objects of everyday life into illogical dream-like images—brings out subconscious and a sense of the absurd
Modern Hero- appears very unheroic- traditional heroes all stood for something, embodied timeless virtues of western civilization: courage, honesty, love, responsibility, even God. They are heroic because they assert these qualities. Modern Hero, or Anti-Hero, seems always to be trying to discover himself, Instead of acting as a moral spokesman of his society, he is presented as alone and aloof, frustrated instead of fulfilled, uncertain instead of affirmative, cowardly instead of brave.
His opponent is not the force of evil and darkness but rather the reader or himself. So modern hero doesn’t embody western values, he often rebels against them and exposes faults of society. Reader embodies values of society.
Existentialism: a 20th-century movement in philosophy
In contrast to most previous philosophical systems, which maintain that an a priori essence precedes or transcends the individual existence of people or of objects, the existentialist conclude that existence precedes essence. The significance of this for human beings is that the concept that a man has an essential self is shown to be an illusion. A man’s self is...
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