Nietzsche and Modernism
Although Nietzsche isn't responsible for creating modernism, his philosophies were representative of the concerns and uncertainly of the modernist artists. Nietzsche and the modernists shared a dark outlook on society, one that he had called in his works "sick" and weak due to the constraints put upon them by the Christian church, and traditional values that had gone unquestioned for too long. To truly realize oneself, you must break free, denounce this imposed morality and search deep inside to develop into your own person.
Nietzsche realized that in the time of the modernist movement, certain people in Europe had begun to break free of these societal restraints, and experienced nihilism, yet he acknowledged that the common man
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This creates a feeling of foolishness and emptiness. They are ashamed admitting to themselves that all they believed in was a lie, and now they have to figure out where they go from here. Religion serves a purpose by supplying structure for people lives, without it they have to be strong in order to continue to move on with their exploration. Second, man has to overcome his loss of his own value, since it was perceived in relation to the structure of society. With the framework gone, where does he fit in? What is his purpose, if he is no longer a part of the structure? Third he gains a disbelief in the metaphysical world and "forbids itself any belief in a true world" excerpt from Freud's notebook.
Nietzsche's concern was that in this process of nihilism that people would loose sight and instead of the church, fall upon the "factual" sciences as a source of reasoning. He observed that Math and Science were fast becoming the new religion among intellectual circles. While these humanities were important to pursue, they were dangerously being assumed as a new "truth." What Math and Science offered that Christianity never could was tangible, provable evidence. In Nietzsche's mind this sidetracked people on their route to finding their inner truth.
The modernists shared Nietzsche's view that human reason that was previously thought to be the path to freedom was instead becoming a constraint. They chose to forgo traditional subject matter and