Modernism & The Coming of World War I (L115)

1.) What are the values of Modernism that we see reflected across different fields, and how do they represent a departure from neoclassicism and the Enlightenment?

Values of Modernism were reflected across fields of science, literature, art and music through influential figures such as Scientist Neils Bohr claiming that the universe can only be understood as far as random chance. Art was suddenly flooded with personal interpretations, as the camera was now more available and landscapes could be captured as the artist wanted, not only as the artist saw them.

2.) What factors contributed to the coming of World War I?

Many factors contributed to the coming of World War I, and it is easy to get bogged down in the details of diplomacy. Basically, France and Russia made a military alliance in 1894; German foreign policy, pushing Britain closer towards France, creates it’s own worst enemy. The trio of France, Britain, and Russia, against Germany alone. Then, the Bosnian Crisis of 1908-09 forced the Russians to back down from supporting the Serbs in war against Austria, and pushed Russia to the edge of it’s limits; no longer will she be told to back down. This led to an arms race between Germany and Britain, and the situation only escalated from there.

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