“The Great War,” as Modris Eksteins writes, “was the psychological turning point. .. for RITES OF SPRING is a remarkable and rare work, a cultural history that. “Ingenious and maddening”: thus many critics label Modris Eksteins’s *Review essay of Modris Eksteins, Rites of Spring: The Great War at the Birth of the. Rites of Spring The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age By Modris Eksteins Illustrated. pages. A Peter Davison Book/Houghton.

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Lf First World War marked the demise of two European empires and the appearance of several new states on the map of Europe. For Eksteins, the First World War was a conflict between the old established world order based on Enlightenment ideals, and represented primarily by Great Britain and, to some extent, by France, and, on the other hand, Germany, the representative of the new ideas of the modern world struggling for liberation and emancipation from the old order.

Rites of Spring: The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age – Modris Eksteins – Google Books

The newfangled contraptions might repel a skirt-wearing native with a bone in his nose; but Englishmen were made of stronger stuff. There was a problem adding your email address.

In the case of the former, Fussell gives a very comprehensive account about writers who were soldiers and viceversa. Eksteins takes wide-brush strokes at times, but his design is convincing and the final portrait indelibly cast, the Great War situated as the pivotal turning point of the Victorian and Edwardian eras into the post modern age.

Honestly, I would recommend this book based on that ‘scene’ alone. At the center there was nothing, an utter vacuum. Your library may have this spriny. The modern impulse before the war had possessed a strong measure of optimism, springing from a bourgeois religion of meliorism.

Lovers of WWI literature.

Jan 03, Steve rated it it was amazing Shelves: My only caveat is that this book may actually work at least for me with a second reading. The chapter sprnig Hitler also seemed rather rushed to me, and the one place where Ekstein fell short in his ability to make certain that the general public got equal consideration with major historical figures. There are a lot of other bits I am tempted to quote, but they are bits from other sources that Eksteins used in his well-documented research.

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Behavior that would have been considered scandalous in peacetime was actually condoned by the authorities for the sake of morale, even though morals and morale had hitherto been considered inseparable [26]. Eksteins ritess Germany as the most modern nation in the world, and asserts that it was at the heart of the modern experience [11].

There are some good sections on art and aesthetics but Eksteins expends much energy trying to tie this into political matters.

Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go. The mix of vivid narrative accounts of key events–the “Rite” premiere, Lindbergh’s landing in Paris, etc.

For instance, during the Maji-Maji revolt against German rule, in current-day Tanzania in8, warriors from three different tribes, convinced that under a spell the machine gun bullets would turn to water, repeatedly charged a German fort and were slaughtered. I would recommend listening to at least the beginning of Stravinsky’s score for the Rite of Spring ballet before reading its on YouTube. Basic materials have their own authenticity; let them speak honestly for themselves, without melody, without ornamentation, without kf.

In fact, while the zeitgeist in Germany might have played a role in the thinking of German leaders, it would be folly to think sspring they would have embarked upon such a risky venture without some strong economic and political reasons for it. He then proceeds to examine the climate of opinion immediately preceding the war, particularly in Germany. The approach works well: It helps to have at least a basic understanding of World War One before reading Ekstein’s text, but it is not absolutely necessary in order to appreciate the arguments he makes.

I’m not going to lie, I cried while I read this book. I was spurred to sppring this book by a discussion in the History of Sexuality class I am teaching this summer. My own exposure to the period comes largely from that literature and some contemporary fiction, such as the novels of Pat Barker.

In Rites of Spring, Modris Eksteins unfolds the inner unity within the sprawl of twentieth-century modernism.


But eksgeins the war dragged on for a while, the propaganda machines and the general brutality of it started to modify the mutual perceptions of the combatants. I read this for class and I enjoyed it a lot. There are some uneven sections in the book. Sign up here to receive your FREE alerts. Another challenge that is evident in the modern world is the resurgence of religion.


It seemed like a good time to delve deeper in these questions, so I picked up Eksteins. See all 78 reviews.

The eroticism present in the ballet is in fact a rebellion against the established spirng, which Eksteins sees as characteristic of Germany prior to the onset of the First World War [6].

Eksteins’ main thesis is that the modern artistic spirit is characterized in the period leading up to WWI by a transition from art as expression of moral commitment to the past, to art as “provocation and event.

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The Rites of Spring – All Empires

The First World War also had a critical effect on the rest of the world, which had been dominated previously by Western Civilization. There is also a lengthy superfluous section on Lindbergh’s solo flight eosteins purpose is unclear. The IWW was the end of an era and the begininng of another. This is one the most important books I’ve ekstein read. But, in a world where science and progress are no longer infallible, the new assertiveness of religion is not out ritse place.

Main remains alone, without a foothold in the real world. I loved the use of music and art as a gateway into interpreting not only social history but m Sorry this review got so long And because this field is new to rties, I found myself believing the author’s conclusions when he helpfully compared his take to other historians’; he fits his argument into the wider conversation.

The emancipation that Eksteins focuses on is not solely the result of the German spirit that demanded emancipation, but rather the result of our society losing confidence in itself and being forced to accept new or old ideaslifestyles and values as being equally valid with those of the Enlightenment, which constituted the bedrock of society throughout the 19th century.

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