Reactionary modernism  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

"Reactionary modernism" is a term first coined by Jeffrey Herf in his 1984 book, Reactionary Modernism: Technology, Culture and Politics in Weimar and the Third Reich, to describe the mixture of "great enthusiasm for modern technology with a rejection of the Enlightenment and the values and institutions of liberal democracy" which was characteristic of the German Conservative Revolutionary movement and Nazism. In turn, this ideology of reactionary modernism was closely linked to the original, positive view of the Sonderweg, which saw Germany as the great Central European power neither of the West nor of the East.

Herf's application of the term to describe fascism has been widely echoed by other scholars. Herf had used the term to denote a trend in intellectual thought during the era, what German novelist Thomas Mann had described as "a highly technological romanticism" during the interwar years. Herf used the term in reference to a wide range of German cultural figures, including Ernst Jünger, Oswald Spengler, Carl Schmitt, and Hans Freyer.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Reactionary modernism" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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