Fin de Siecle and its Legacy / Edition 1

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For many years the term fin de siècle has been used to imply a state of decadence which was thought to have pervaded 'civilised' European society in the years around 1900. This volume of essays, which draw on a very wide range of disciplines, argues that the period was in fact one of dramatic change, essentially positive and forward-looking in character. This was the period of the rise of the giant corporation, of mass production and mass consumption, and of the development of the generation and distribution of electrical energy. Novel social features such as mass politics, mass media, and mass sport involved the body of ordinary people and in the arts, complex reactions to contemporary social reality were aroused and expressed. This was also the period which gave birth to the study of quantum mechanics, relativity physics, mental processes and genetics. This volume forms part of a sequence of collections of essays which began with The Enlightenment in National Context (1981) and has continued with Romanticism in National Context (1988). They bring together comparative, national and interdisciplinary approaches to the history of great movements in the development of human thought and actions.

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Editorial Reviews

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"Taken as a whole, these essays offer a range of insights into the recent past and, indeed, into the present." Choice
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521349154
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/1991
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 356
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations; Notes on contributors; Introduction; 1. A legacy of fin-de-siécle; 2. Fin-de-siécle: industrial transformation Alfred D. Chandler Jr; 3. The electrical century: the beginnings of electricity supply in Austria Roman Sandgruger (translated from German by Richard Hockaday); 4. Heralds of modernity: cars and planes from invention to necessity Richard Overy; 5. Nationalism, anti-Semitism, socialism, and political Catholicism as expressions of mass politics in the twentieth century Enzo Collotti (translated from Italian by Mario di Gregorio); 6. Mass media and culture in fin-de-siécle Europe Patrick Bratlinger; 7. Forward race and the laughter of pygmies: on Olympic sport Henning Eichberg (translated from German by Maureen Cottrell); 8. Photography, cinematography, and the theatre: a history of a relationship Barbara Lesak (translated from German by Richard Hockaday); 9. Fin-de-siécle painting Jennifer Birkett; 10. Personalities and principles: aspects of literature and life in fin-de-siécle England Alison Hennegan; 11. Heroes, meadows and machinery: fin-de-siécle music Fritz Weber; 12. The transformation of physics Erwin N. Hiebert; 13. A feeling for the 'whole': the holistic reaction in neurology from the fin-de-siécle to the interwar years Anne Harrington; 14. Biology and beauty: science and aesthetics in fin-de-siécle Germany Kurt Bayeritz (translated from German by Peter Germain); 15. The unmastered past of human genetics Mikulás Teich; Index.

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