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History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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Art in the context of ‘macro’ history

November 30th, 2014 · No Comments

Arts & Letters: The rise of cubism. What happened in Paris in 1910 can be thanked or blamed for almost everything in art that came later that century… more»

Modern art is an exception to much of the discussion in WHEE (history-and-evolution.com), or at least it seems so. The sudden explosion of innovation in the fine arts came a bit late and wasn’t predicted by the early modern. The period up to the Romantic period was stolidly ‘classical’. Then suddenly, quite late, it suddenly explodes around the end of the nineteenth century. There is a clear reason for this (although it is hard to be sure with this exception), in fact: man has learned to master the creativity required for art. The field of macro induction doesn’t waste energy on art: man is beginning to self-innovate here. Or is he? The curious case of modern art from the Impressionists onward is a fascinating mystery even in the context of the ‘eonic effect’. It is thus significant that the Renaissance, which precedes the early modern and isn’t a part of the modern transition, in my view, shows a unique case of human autonomous art innovation or flowering, unlike the larger sphere of culture where man up to now has been dependent on macro induction. The Renaissance is not at all what people think it is. It was not a period of social innovation in the way the early modern was (the Borgias?), but the question is a bit obscure because the the Renaissance overlaps with the early modern (the macro model is imperfect here perhaps).
In any case, the modern transition finally shows a really dramatic revolution, one that seems already spent. It will take a longer perspective to figure all this out. Here we can see one telling case where man is still unable to really figure out one of the most classic of the ‘macro’ induced art innovations: tragic drama. http://history-and-evolution.com/whee4th/chap5_1_3.htm

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