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Birth of Modern European Thought Remember these movements


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Title: Birth of Modern European Thought Remember these movements

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Remember these movements?
  • The Scientific Revolution?
  • The Enlightenment?
  • Romanticism?
  • Could you capsulate them, and define them within
    their historical context?

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • We have seen Europe move though an age of
    Materialism, Nationalism and Imperialism in the
    latter 1800s
  • Attitudes about the very foundation of life and
    thought are changing
  • Lets look at the birth of ideas that will
    shape the coming century

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • We will see the Great thinkers, artists and
    writers of this age Darwin, Freud, Einstein, Van
    Gogh, August Comte, Flaubert, Zola, Shaw,
    Nietzsche and Jung absolutely reshape the way
    that society is structured.
  • This is an age that challenges the social
    structure, mores and ideology, and with it
    propels Europe into the twentieth century.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Advances in access to education make for a more
    literate public.
  • Instilling basic skills of reading writing and
    math make for a public that can better serve the
    growing bureaucracies and industrial economies of
  • Think of the new literacy as the same as the
    railway or the steamship. Both radically changes
    the very structure of society, and transported
    if you will, the general public more quickly than

The Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Cheap reading material will also promote
    literacy and the exchange of Ideas. Newspapers
    became conduits for advertisements of new
    products, and the nexus for political or
    religious viewpoints
  • Yet, literacy among the public was marginal at
    best, and most publications were geared to a
    lesser reading public
  • Hence, we do not necessarily see the general
    populace digesting the works of Zola or Ibsen.
    They remain the province of the intelligentsia.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Science at the mid-century mark, and how we are
    on the cusp of great change.
  • Experimentation and observation remained the
    cornerstone of the scientific community.
  • We will see the changes within the scientific
    community will become the foundation of changes
    in other facets of European Thought.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Science was, by mid 1850
  • Rational
  • Mechanical
  • Dependable
  • Lets look at some key movements in this area
  • August Comte and the theory of Positivism.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Positivism
  • All human thought was in three stages
  • Theological physical nature explained through
    the actions of spirits
  • Metaphysical- abstract principles were the
    operative agencies of nature
  • Positive Stage nature was explained by exact
    description, by scientific observation.
  • Science had entered that third stage, and Comte
    believed that other laws could do the same
    (behavior laws those applicable to Human
  • Hence, knowledge in any area should match
    knowledge gained in the scientific realm

The Birth of Modern European Thought
  • What we can assess concerning the importance to
    Comte is that he is the father of the modern
    science of Sociology.
  • Hence, human behavior, interaction, morality and
    relationships could be subjected to the same
    level of experimentation and scrutiny as the
    physical laws of the universe.
  • This will break the ice for the formation of
    Psychoanalysis as a actual pursuit of the medical

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Charles Darwin and Natural Selection.
  • Theory of Natural Selection
  • This removes purpose, or the idea of an
    all-knowing creator as a means of explaining how
    things have developed.
  • Hence, eyes were not made for seeing by God, they
    were developed out of a need, mechanistically,
    over time.
  • This attacks both the fixed nature of the
    Universe, and the deistic argument for the
    existence of God.
  • The world was in a state of flux, and if that
    were true, was it not true that values, customs
    and beliefs are also in a constant state of

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • And, if the world was changing, then could not
    society and values, customs, and beliefs be
    changing as well?
  • In his Descent of Man, Darwin became the first to
    apply natural selection to mankind.
  • Morality, religion, and the physical frame all
    developed in response to the requirement of
  • Hence, neither mans origin, nor his character,
    (what it has always meant to be human) required
    the existence of God.
  • Think if the impact of this in relationship to
    the role of Christianity in Western Europe!

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Science and Ethics.
  • Herbert Spencer and Survival of the Fittest.
  • Sociologically
  • Competition makes society
  • Struggle was an ethical imperative
  • Why aid the poor when they are simply less able
    to struggle
  • Hence, we see the roots of Social Darwinism

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Thomas Huxley opposed the thinking of Spencer
  • He felt that the physical process of evolution
    was against the process of ethical development
  • Natural struggle simply demonstrated how human
    should not behave
  • We are not animals our ethical structure
    separates us from the animals!
  • Goodness and Virtue have nothing to do with the
    survival of the fittest!
  • See the Huxley document on pg. 800, where he
    criticizes the evolutionary Ethicists.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Christianity Under Siege
  • Could we hold the teachings of the church to the
    same standards as those of science?
  • What was the historical validity of Bible of the
    existence of Jesus?
  • David Strauss questions whether a historical
    figure known as Jesus existed at all!
  • Jesus simply was an externalization of the
    peoples hopes and aspirations at that time, as
    opposed to the existence of an actual person.
  • Other proposed that human authors were the ones
    who wrote the Bible, like the Homeric Epics

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • How did science undermine the basis of
  • Geology the Earth is actually much older than
    the bible portends
  • Floods earthquakes and the like have natural and
    explainable causes
  • Anthropologists, psychologists and sociologists
    all became professions that, in most cases,
    supplant the impact/necessity of organized
  • Science becoming the new Religion

The Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Morality.
  • Was the Old Testament God of retribution and
    punishment, of judgment, really tenable with the
    New Testament God who sacrificed himself for the
    good of mankind?
  • After all, the Old Testament God did sacrifice
    the only perfect being to walk on the earth for
    his own satisfaction!
  • Could clergy preach beliefs they did not
    subscribe to?

The Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Christianity, as a whole, was losing its
    intellectual credibility.
  • We will see the assault on Christianity enjoined
    most vehemently by Nietzsche, who see it as
    weakening mankind and promoting sacrifice rather
    than personal will and strength.
  • This leads, naturally, to a competition between
    Church and State.
  • Could modern science and politics take the place
    of organized religion in a persons life?

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Examples of conflict between Church and State
  • Great Britain Education Act of 1870.
  • Government run Schools were opened where the
    Anglican Church had previously not provided for
    the people.
  • Anglicans, and Non-Anglican groups were angered
    by this new competition, and it forced them to
    spend more money on their own school to keep up.
  • Education Act of 1902 provided aid for both
    religious and non-religious schools, but held
    each to the same standard

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • France Education issue was very contentious!
  • Falloux Law 1850 priests were instructors in
    Public Schools
  • Ferry Laws religious education in public
    schools is replaced
  • Pro-Dreyfus pressure helped to suppress religious
  • 1905- Napoleonic Concordat is replaced breaking
    ties with Rome and separating church and state

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Germany and Kulturkampf This is key!!!
  • Threat of the Roman Catholic Church leads
    Bismarck to enact the Policy of Kulturkampf
  • He removes both Protestant and Catholic clergy
    from local education. Secularizes education.
  • May Laws passed for Prussians only. Priests are
    educated in German Schools, and have to pass
    state administered tests
  • State could veto church appointments.
  • Pope loses disciplinary power it is the
    province of the state.
  • Police used against any dissenters.
  • Yet, the policy fails. It engenders Catholic
    resentment an creates Martyrs. It is Bismarck's
    greatest blunder!

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Roman Catholic Church strikes back
  • Papacy remains steadfast and conservative
  • Liberal ideology is attacked
  • Syllabus of Errors 1864 Pius IX condemns all
    liberal thought and modern thought
  • The church is posited against all contemporary
    science, philosophy and politics
  • It gets deeper

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • 1869 First Vatican Council
  • Papal infallibility is re-established
  • Papacy, after Italian unification is relegated to
    the Vatican State they do not recognize the
    newly formed Italian nation. They will not until
    1929, after a concession by Benito Mussolini!!!
  • Pope Leo XIII takes over in 1878 and enacts
    progressive measures in the church
  • What were they?

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Rerum Novarum 1891 Think of this as a
    mini-version of the Council of Trent.
  • Defends Private Property
  • Religious education
  • Control of marriage laws the church
  • Condemns socialism
  • Call for fair treatment of employees by employers
  • Supports laws to regulate labor
  • Calls for a corporate society to replace both
    socialism and capitalism
  • Condemns catholic modernism.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Toward the Twentieth century frame of mind.
  • Rationalism Liberalism and Bourgeoisie
    mentality are challenged
  • Lets look at changes in science

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Key Scientists and basic concepts
  • Wilhelm Roentgen- discovery of X-Rays
  • J.J Thompson Theory of the Electron
  • Ernest Rutherford Explains origin of radiation.
    Speculates on Energy gained from this.
  • Max Planck Quantum theory of Energy. Energy is
    a series of packets, not a continuous stream.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Albert Einstein Theory of Relativity Time and
    Space are a continuum.
  • Werner Heisneberg Behavior of matter (subatomic
    particles) is statistical Probability not
  • Again, this throws doubt on previously held

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Scientific movement is important on a number of
  • It makes science less popular, and somewhat less
    accessible than it previously had been
  • Most of the certainty of previously held theories
    is called into question
  • Through research, medical knowledge and
    technological change will affect 20th century
    society more than any other intellectual activity

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Literature Realism and Naturalism
  • In both cases, these literary movements challenge
    established beliefs and mores concerning what
    would be called the middle class values of
    European life.
  • Remember that these middle class values are a
    direct result of the growing economic prosperity
    over the course of industrialism.
  • Often, how a writer sees society can tell us a
    great deal of how society can affect writers in
    this case, we are speaking of the continued of
    influence of scientific investigation

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Realism and Naturalism confronted the reader with
    the harsh realities of life,telling stories of
    human torment and loss in a graphic and sometimes
    brutal fashion.
  • These authors are products of the influence of
    science, as well as the horrid social conditions
    of many of the residents of Europe at this time.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Key Figures
  • Charles Dickens most of his work reflected the
    poverty dejection and hopelessness of the English
    working class
  • Henri Balzac Reflected the same world View as
    Dickens, but in France

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Gustav Flaubert His work Madam Bovary is widely
    considered the first work of realism
  • Emile Zola moves realism to a more naturalistic
    state. He felt that he could observe his
    characters as a scientist would observe
    phenomena,and that he would report, through the
    composition of his work the results
  • He sees himself like a surgeon, except he
    performs autopsies on living creatures.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Henrik Ibsen strips away the veneer of proper
    middle class life to expose its more seamy side.
  • Issues of self hatred, despair, and death
    provide a very different view of the values of
    the middle class.
  • George Bernard Shaw attacks the romantic notions
    concerning love and war a fan of Ibsens work.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Hence, we see literature move in a similar
    direction as science in the fact that its major
    figures are confronting/attacking some of the
    traditional social mores, and presenting a more
    analytical view of the human condition.
  • Realist writers felt it was their duty to
    represent the commonplace and the real world.
  • Subjects that had been previously considered ot
    be off limits were examined in great detail.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Literature had never before dealt with issues
    like infidelity, murder, poverty and despair.
  • These writers were not interested in posing
    solutions to these issues, they were rather
    recorders of the human condition.
  • It is of some note that, arguable the greatest of
    the naturalists, Emile Zola, was a former
    newspaper reporter.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Modernism The term Modernism usually refers to
    the early part of the twentieth century --
    sometimes beginning with the First World War in
    1914, and continuing through the 1930s or so --
    perhaps up to the Second World War.
  • Some of the most influential Modernist writers
    tried some radical experiments with form poets
    like Pound and Eliot working in free verse, for
    instance, and novelists like Joyce, Woolf, and
    Stein experimenting with stream of consciousness
    and elaborate language games.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • How is Modernism different from Naturalism?
  • A naturalist novel, like La Bete Humaine by Emile
    Zola is brutally accurate, almost told in the
    manner of a newspaper report.
  • Modernism relies on stream of consciousness. In
    modernist literature, authors will not rely so
    heavily on story line, character development and
    resolution of conflict
  • It is not so concerned with social issues.
    Instead, it was meant to focus on the aesthetic
    on what was beautiful

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Modernists were like their naturalist
    predecessors in the fact that they were breaking
    with convention, with the accepted form.
  • This is reflected not only in Literature, but
    also in art and Poetry
  • Key figures

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • England Virginia Woolf. Challenges the stogy and
    formal Victorian mores.
  • France Marcel Proust. Relies heavily on Stream
    of Consciousness. Seven novel work Search of Time
    Past is his most significant.
  • Germany Thomas Mann. Magic Mountain tells the
    horrific tale of a tuberculosis hospital
  • Ireland James Joyce. Ulysses Transforms the
    structure of then modern novel, and the paragraph
    as well. Very difficult reading.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Friedrich Nietzsche The revolt against reason.
    This stuff is good!
  • Big pictureRational thought comes under attack.
    How necessary is it to address the human
  • Nietzsche will, at various stages of his career,
    attack the following institutions or belief

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Christianity
  • Democracy
  • Nationalism
  • Science
  • Progress

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Key works and ideas
  • Birth of Tragedy (1872) non-rational aspects of
    human nature are as significant as rational
  • Instinct and Ecstasy are significant
  • Limiting experience to what can be reasoned or
    analyzed is to limit the human experience
  • The Socratic method of limitless questioning is
    favored rather than more traditional methods

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Further Ideas of Nietzsche
  • Thus Spake Zarathustra Sees democracy and
    religion as only creating sheep
  • Pronounces the death of God, and the existence of
    the Ubermensch or over man.
  • This is often misinterpreted, and is later
    co-opted by the Nazis as the Justification for
    the Master Race.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • What Nietzsche realized was that man must
    understand that life is not governed by rational
    principles. Life is full of cruelty, injustice,
    uncertainty and absurdity.
  • There are no absolute standards of good and evil
    which can be demonstrated by human reason.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • There is only naked man living alone in a godless
    and absurd world.
  • Modern industrial, bourgeois society, according
    to Nietzsche, made man decadent and feeble.
  • It made man a victim of the excessive development
    of the rational faculties at the expense of human
    will and instinct.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Against the tendencies of bourgeois society,
    Nietzsche stressed that man ought to recognize
    the dark and mysterious world of instinct -- the
    true life force. "Du sollst werden, der du bist,"
    Nietzsche wrote.
  • "You must become who you are."
  • Excessive rationality, an over-reliance on human
    reason, does little more than smother the
    spontaneity necessary for creativity.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • For man to realize his potential, he must sever
    his dependence on reason and the intellect and
    instead, develop his instincts, drive and will.
  • Christianity, with all its restrictions and
    demands to conform, crushes the human impulse to
    life. Christian morality must be obliterated
    because it is fit only for the weak and the

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Nietzsche said that the reason Christianity
    triumphed in the Roman world was that the lowest
    orders -- the meek and the mild -- wanted to
    inherit the earth from their aristocratic
  • The lower orders were trying to strike back and
    subdue their superiors. They did this by
    condemning as evil those traits which they
    lacked strength, power and the zest for life.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Instead, the Christians made their own low and
    wretched lives the standard of all things to
    come. If you deviated from this standard, you
    were shackled with guilt.
  • In his book, The Anti-Christ of 1888, Nietzsche
    wrote that

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Christianity has waged a war to the death against
    this higher type of man. . . . Christianity has
    taken the side of everything weak, base,
    ill-constituted, it has made an ideal out of
    opposition to the instinct of strong life. . . .
    Christianity is a revolt of everything that
    crawls along the ground directed against that
    which is elevated.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The philosophers of the Age of Enlightenment of
    the 18th century, attacked Christianity because
    it was contrary to human reason. Because they
    wanted to make Christianity more reasonable, they
    retained Christian ethics.
  • Nietzsche attacked Christianity as well -- but he
    did so on the grounds that it gave man a sick
    soul. It was life-denying. It blocked the free
    and spontaneous exercise of human instinct and
    will. In short, Christianity extinguished the
    spark of life.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Man must then rise above and go beyond nihilism
    (the belief that all the old values and truths
    have lost their vitality and validity) by
    creating new values man could then become his
    own master and be true to himself rather than to
    another. "Du sollst werden, der du bist."
  • Man can overcome uniformity and mediocrity, he
    can overcome socialism, democracy, trade
    unionism, progress, enlightenment and all the
    other ills so consistent with western

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The new man dares to be himself and as himself,
    traditional, Christian ideals of good and evil
    have no meaning and he recognizes them as such.
    His "will to power" means, for Nietzsche, that he
    has gone "beyond good and evil."
  • The enhancement of the will to power brings
    supreme enjoyment. The Superman casts off all
    established values and because he is now free of
    all restraints, rules and codes of behavior
    imposed by civilization, he creates his own

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • According to Nietzsche, man could be saved by a
    new type of man, the "Übermensch," the Superman.
  • These are the men who will not be held back by
    the hogwash of modern, mediocre, industrial,
    scientific, bourgeois, Christian civilization.
  • The superman creates his own morality based on
    human instincts, drive and will.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Killer Kwotes
  • There is no moral phenomena, but only a moral
    interpretation of phenomena.
  • We need a critique of moral values the value of
    these values must first be called into question.
  • He was more interested in the social and
    psychological sources of what is considered good
    or evil, than simply trying to identify what
    good and evil are.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Think for a moment
  • This new age seems to have a common thread of
    looking below the surface and examining those
    issues that are not reflected by accepted
  • No other field of study reflects this better than
    the field of Psychoanalysis, and the work of

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Freud Big Picture
  • Key work Interpretation of Dreams
  • Key Concepts
  • Infants have a sexual consciousness/ awarenessit
    does not simply appear at Puberty
  • And, matters of sexuality figured prominently in
    the mental well-being of any patient.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Here, in this theory of child development, is
    perhaps one of Freuds most controversial ideas
  • Since children are sexual beings, and these
    urges do not simply emerge during puberty, then
    the innocence of childhood, long revered in
    Western society, became a falsehood.
  • It would be in Freuds interpretations of
    dreams, long held in cultures to be simply
    nonsense, until the Romantic Era, as the work of
    an active mind, even during sleep.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Dreams are not simply nonsense they are in fact
    the expression of our subconscious selves
  • A dream is a disguised fulfillment of a
    suppressed wish.
  • And, from that it is clear that unconscious
    drives impact conscious behavior.
  • There is her a reflection of the Romantic era,
    and the importance of emotion and instinct, yet
    we will see a distinct sense of the Enlightenment
    in Freuds theories as well

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Freud and Enlightenment Thought
  • Wanted humans to use reason to live free of fears
    caused by the subconscious
  • His belief that there were rational foundations
    for the formation of personalities
  • He knew the tremendous sacrifice necessary to
    curtail instinct and form rational, civilized

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Yet, it would be incorrect to see Freud as one
    who believed that Humans should divest themselves
    of all forms of repression and express themselves
  • Freud knew that civilization was dependent on a
    certain degree of repression of mans sexuality
    and aggressive tendencies.
  • Sacrifice and struggle were necessary, and Freud
    did not have a very optimistic view of the future
    of civilization in the West, like many other
    thinkers of this time.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Freud is best known for his interpretations of
    dreams, and the internal struggle present in all
    of mankind of three forces contending for control
    of our conscious and subconscious minds.
  • All of mankinds personality traits, behaviors
    and dreams can be examined as a product of this
  • Remember how revolutionary it was to consider
    Psychoanalysis a legitimate science.
  • Similar to many of the breakthroughs in science,
    most of Freuds work would take place below the
    surface of what was considered to be known and

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Id Ego Superego
  • We have the
  • Conscious
  • Pre-Conscious
  • Unconscious Mind.
  • Freud felt that there was a physical process, a
    struggle, between these three. All of us are the
    result of the finality of this struggle, of which
    of the three is most dominant.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Id
  • Ego
  • Super Ego
  • These are the three masters that are vying for
    the control of the individuals mind and
  • They are distinct beings, and they have different
    levels of control on the individual, and on the
    conscious mind.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Id
  • Raw animal nature
  • No values
  • No good
  • No evil
  • No morality
  • Every action can be justified/rationalized
    nothing can be judged

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Id is that raw part of our being that
    society strives to keep in check.
  • Our whole legal code and religious structure
    seeks to contain the Id.
  • Anarchy. Hedonism. Lust. Avarice. Jealousy.
  • These are more stylized names for then Id.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Our mind seeks to keep this Id repressed, on
  • Because of the volatile nature of the Id, and the
    ease with which it can spring to the surface. It
    must be contained
  • We need assistance in this repression of Mr. Id,
    and there are others who will join us in this

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Ego.
  • First, try and divest yourself of the common
    notion of the ego as that chest thumping,
    self-centered behavior that we expect out of
    enormously overpaid professional athletes.
  • In Freudian psychology, it is more than thator

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Think of the Ego as a part of the Id
  • Orthe Ego is the manager/P.R. guy for the Id.
  • Without him, the Id would do nothing but wreck
    hotel rooms, abuse substances, violate laws and
    generally self-destruct.
  • Ego keeps the Id in check, and is a liaison
    between the Id and the rational world.
  • It places thought between desire and action!

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Some final statements on the relationship between
    Id and Ego
  • Ego is reason, rationality, circumspection,
  • Id is untamed passions, impulse and emotion,
    random actionpre-conscious
  • Got it?
  • (Who is winning your Id vs. Ego battle?)

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The poor Ego really has a tough time, because
    dealing with the Id is not the only task it must
  • Freud states that the Ego really has to serve
    three masters..
  • The Id (Got it)
  • The External World (Got it)
  • The Super Ego (What the?)

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Lets backtrack a second before we look at the
    Super Ego
  • The Ego actually digs the Idlikes to hang out
    with Id..feeds off Ids energy.
  • Ego wants to be loyaleven wants to be down
    with the Id if only the Id could just relax, and
    slow downchill out.
  • But, Id wont(get it?)

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • There lurks in the background, watching every
    move the Ego makes..
  • Super Ego!!!

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Super Egohas the Ego under surveillance.
  • Super Ego does not want to hear how difficult it
    is to deal with Id.
  • Super Ego has no time to hear of the difficulties
    Ego has with the real world.
  • Super Ego wants the norms of society followed,
    no Ids, ands or buts. (Get it?)

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Superego is that collection of societal moral
    imperatives, and expectations that the ego is
    mandated to follow.
  • Hence, it is both a watchdog of the ego, and an
    example that is held up to the ego as something
    that it has to strive for.
  • The ID will act as the ID will, which is like a
    four-year old.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Because of the enormous pressure from the Id to
    feed me
  • And, from the Super Ego to keep that Id in
  • And, dealing with the external world, reality
  • The Ego begins to acknowledge its weaknesses
  • It cannot wear this many hats.
  • There is a sense of inadequacy because it cannot
    keep the ID in line, and cannot measure up to the
    societal expectations of the Superego.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Ego feels anxiety, despair, inadequacies,
    self-hatred because it just cant keep up with
    all of its responsibilities.
  • It is any wonder that these feelings are so
    prevalent in todays, or for that matter, any
  • So, many of the character traits people exhibit
    are simply externalizations reflect of the egos
    struggle with the ID and the Superego

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • The Ego feels anxiety
  • Reality anxiety in the face of the real world
  • Normal anxiety in the face of the Super Ego
  • Neurotic anxiety as it deals with the Id
  • Freud states in conclusion that

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • We cannot think of the Ego, Id and the Super ego
    as part of a clearly defined pie chart or graph.
  • Even though these entities have distinct roles
    we have to view them as more like colors of a
    impressionist painting, that, although they are
    clearly different hues, make up the larger
  • Peasant Man by Vincent Van Gogh

Birth of Modern European Thought
Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Carl Jung A successor to Freud and another big
    hitter in the early Twentieth Century
  • Jung saw the existence of a collective
    unconscious that all humans were attuned to.
  • These collective memories constitute the soul
    of a person
  • He saw twentieth century man as being alienated
    from these collective memories.
  • Think of Freud as a child of the Enlightenment
    and Jung as a product of the Romantic Movement

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Retreat from Rationalism in Politics.
  • Big Picture
  • Rational Principles were looked at as a way to
    amend the inequities of society by liberal and
    socialists alike.
  • Increasing the vote was believed to create a more
    participatory and representative government.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • We have a backlash against this progressive
    thought because, society did not seem to be
    reaping the benefits of expanding the franchise
    and increased education
  • Major figures in the retreat from Rationalism

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Max Weber The primary proponent of the
    rationalist movement.
  • He views the bureaucracy as necessary it
    provided the human with a place
  • Self image and self worth come from belonging to
    an organization. Division of Labor simply
    provided mankind a place, his role, in society.
  • Hence, regimentation and systemic control were a
    good thing!
  • Key work is the Protestant ethic and the Spirit
    of Capitalism
  • This is the so-called Protestantism Theory

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Puritans achieved wealth and success for their
    own sake rather than for the sake of attaining
    some manner of higher place in heaven.
  • Look to European History post-Reformation, and
    there is some validity to the belief that where
    Protestantism was predominant, (England and the
    Netherlands) there was a vibrant economy.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Racism.
  • Arthur Gobineau. Essay on the Inequality of the
    Human Races.
  • Views Western Societies problems because of
    dilution of racial purity, specifically the Aryan
  • Couple this with growing anthropological findings
    and the new age of Imperialism and we can see the
    spread of Racism as an ideology.
  • Most critically, as Race theory is wed with the
    Biological sciences, which had gained credence at
    this time, those proposing racial purity became a
    groundwork for the hierarchy of Superior and
    inferior races in Europe, and beyond.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Englishmen Stewart Chamberlain publishes
    Foundations of the Nineteenth Century.
  • Saw genetics as away of making a superior race.
  • Anti-Semitism was crucial to this theory, and it
    would become one of the cornerstones of Nazi
  • This convergence of Race theory and Anti-Semitism
    also fed in to the growing sense of nationalism
    in late 19th century Europe.
  • This nationalism was far cry from the liberal
    national movements from earlier in the century.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Growth of Nationalism
  • It is more aggressive and more racial
  • This is no longer the nationalists trying to
    quantify an identity of a people
  • Now, we are talking about a Europe redrawn along
    ethnic boundaries
  • Think of the growing discontent in the Habsburg
    Empire as an example.
  • Further, this national character is extended,
    naturally, to the new age of Imperialism The
    White mans burden being the standard example.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Nationality would be able to overcome the issues
    of class, race and geography.
  • Nationhood would supplant the importance of
    religion in many cases
  • We are moving to the State as the only
    unification of the people-the roots of fascism
    and Totalitarianism
  • And, throw in the rise of racism and you have a
    very contentious political and social climate.
  • Is it any surprise that nationalism would play
    such a critical role in the onset of WWI.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Anti-Semitism and the Birth of Zionism.
  • Anti-Semitic Politics was rooted in the belief
    that no matter what level of assimilation the
    Jews achieved, their Jewishness would remain.
  • It was not the character, but the blood of the
    Jew that was the issue, and that would not ever
  • This launches a movement lead by an Austro-
    Hungarian named Theodore Herzl
  • See the document on pg. 819 as Herzl calls for
    the establishment of a Jewish state.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Science, Racial Thought and the Non-Western World
  • Imperialism also meant the spread of
    experimentation and theory in the scientific
  • Power of science and industry became governmental
    justification for the oppression of those less
    able to rule themselves.
  • Japan is alone among these nations who realize
    they have to get in step industrially with the
    west to survive.
  • Racial Theory justified the control of racially
    inferior peoples.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Women in Modern Thought
  • Anti-feminism in Late century Thought
  • Stereotypical views of women were bolstered by
    the growing emphasis of the truths of superiority
    in biology and evolution.
  • Women in the mothering role becomes the paramount
    function for them many circles.
  • This is an outgrowth of the growing cult of
    domesticity, bolstering stereotypes concerning
    women, and their roles in society.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Women were seen, in a scientific realm, as the
    weaker sex.
  • Darwin himself espoused this view.
  • TH Huxley proposed that women were unfit to study
    the primitive peoples of the world, it was unfit
    for them to have contact with such savages.
  • Anthropologists went so far as to ascribe a lower
    place on the evolutionary scale to women and the
    lesser races.
  • There is a natural backlash to this, and we see a
    rise of the feminists movement in the late 1800s.

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Further, Psychoanalysts like Freud supplanted the
    scientific communities belief that women were
  • Overall, the reproductive role of women placed
    them in virtually every social belief system as
    inferior to men.
  • Comte, Spencer and others believed in this

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • New Directions in Feminism.
  • Sexual Morality and the family.
  • Treatment of Prostitutes in England, like the
    Contagious Disease act, (which allowed random
    medical exams for women of questionable
    character) prompted many middle class women to
    come to the defense of poor women who often were
    forced into prostitution because of economic

Birth of Modern European Thought
  • Hence, they took on the double standard that
    existed in society that would punish the
    prostitute while still condoning the behavior of
    the customer.
  • Other feminists went so far as to call for the
    enlistment the aid of the state in the lives of
    mothers because the task was so important.