Definition of modernism in US English:



  • 1Modern character or quality of thought, expression, or technique.

    ‘when he waxes philosophical, he comes across as a strange mix of nostalgia and modernism’
    • ‘Like all of his shows, this one is challenging and timely, but it only glancingly addresses how the computer is eroding the hard-won humanistic qualities of modernism.’
    • ‘One is the rejection of foundationalism, which characterized modernism's theological reliance on science, psychology, and philosophy.’
    • ‘Not that it necessarily has to be a symbol of modernism and innovation that is targeted for immolation.’
    • ‘In objectifying his memories, Jim abandons what we might call his realism for a mode of representation more characteristic of modernism.’
    • ‘Modernity and modernism don't necessarily equate with modernization.’
    • ‘This would be a purely social postmodernity which derives from the recognition that even the satires and games of modernism and modernity posit a deeper reality which we can no longer believe in.’
    • ‘In most Arab societies one may find values that endeavor to include modernism and follow modern life style.’
    • ‘Therefore, the techniques of modernism, rather than outmoded conceptions of realism, might offer the necessary strategies for representing the reality of modernist events.’
    • ‘Rather, his regime uses the language of pragmatism and modernism to herald changes that appear at odds with the general cultural consensus on topics such as education and religion.’
    • ‘By 1914, Europe had perhaps reached the limits of modernism, which was characterized, above all, by disorder in the mind.’
    • ‘Everything is nostalgia, eventually - modernism is just nostalgia for the future, rooted by the same disgust with the present that informs new urbanist nostalgia.’
    • ‘The answer for most was the multi-faceted world of experiments in expression that we call modernism.’
    • ‘Using this analytical scheme, I argued that Islamic modernism was an outcome of the discursive context of the ideological contentions in the second part of the nineteenth-century Egypt.’
    • ‘In this, he overcomes the eye/body/mind splits so characteristic of modernism and modernity, especially in the visual arts.’
    • ‘There was a total commitment to modernism and innovation, an impatience to get to the future ahead of everybody else.’
    change, alteration, revolution, upheaval, transformation, metamorphosis, reorganization, restructuring, rearrangement, recasting, remodelling, renovation, restyling, variation
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    1. 1.1 A style or movement in the arts that aims to break with classical and traditional forms.
      • ‘This is a leading distinction between modernism and postmodernism, the so-called decentering of the self.’
      • ‘Although it was similar in context and emphasis to the decorative style of ‘art nouveau,’ a stronger connection to modernism distinguished art deco.’
      • ‘Is the emergent virtual art that you identify here, for you, a counterrevolution against modernism and postmodernism - or not?’
      • ‘Much Middle Eastern art in the Biennale revealed a combination of older styles of modernism (early abstraction, Cubism).’
      • ‘Its pictorial and plastic experiments were deemed crucial to the construction of modernism and the history of 20th-century art.’
      • ‘It is not quite postmodern yet, but there is a movement against modernism.’
      • ‘The mixture of classical modernism with traditionalist references was thick, and it seemed undeniable that many of the works were deliberate remakes of recognizable Western modernist icons.’
      • ‘She also participated in the ideological and esthetic shift from modernism to postmodernism and has experience with the strategies of both.’
      • ‘That earlier activity ran parallel to the beginnings of modernism in French art, with artists like Manet and Degas responding to the anxious and unsettled urban environment they inhabited.’
      • ‘There was modernism, then postmodernism, and modernism reappeared, because it never completely disappeared.’
      • ‘The work establishes the bridge between modernism and post-modernism utilizing primitive oral techniques.’
      • ‘In Europe it was Matisse who ushered Bonnard into modernism, asserting that he was a ‘great painter for today and assuredly for the future’.’
      • ‘The works of these authors inhabit the domains of neo-realism, modernism, postmodernism and magical realism.’
      • ‘He is known for his large abstract collages made of cut and painted canvas that have inflections of European modernism and Abstract Expressionism.’
      • ‘Or is virtualism an extension of modernism and postmodernism?’
      • ‘The Futurists were influenced by the European artistic movements like modernism and Cubism, with its fractured way of looking at the world.’
      • ‘He parodied the historical parade of styles in modernism, mimicking, for example, the strains of lyrical and geometric abstraction.’
      • ‘These buildings at the Bund represent a variety of Western architectural styles including classicism, eclecticism and modernism.’
      • ‘Visual art, including bodybuilding, can be divided into classicism and modernism.’
      • ‘I will reveal myself as being closer to modernism than to postmodernism by asserting that I believe there are some things that are true.’
    2. 1.2 A movement toward modifying traditional beliefs in accordance with modern ideas, especially in the Roman Catholic Church in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
      • ‘At a time when the church took a rigid and protective stance against what it believed were destructive forces of modernism, Petre's voice honored both reason and faith.’
      • ‘The quality and quantity of his autobiographies makes them an exceptionally valuable resource for students of Loisy's role in Roman Catholic modernism.’
      • ‘Orthodox faiths that unite in resisting religious liberalism and modernism may nonetheless disagree about the content of theology and about its social implications.’
      • ‘Eager missionaries enter Asia prepared to do battle with ancient Asian religions; they find themselves rehashing old fights with theological modernism.’
      • ‘And though Catholic modernism arose in response to the Enlightenment, it may prove to be even more appropriate for postmodern believers.’
      • ‘Indeed traditionalist, Tridentine Roman Catholics deplore the theological modernism into which their church has sunk through the espousal of the theory of doctrinal development.’
      • ‘Our analyses of national data for 12 European countries and Israel lent strong support to our hypotheses linking theological modernism with cultural and economic individualism.’
      • ‘There is no return to the 19th century with its opposition between Church and modernism.’