Defining Modernity

The term modernity is associated with the beginning of renaissance in the 15th century. Before renaissance, the period between the death of Aristotle and the time till 15th century renaissance is known as the “Dark Age” dominated by religious orthodoxy.

The idea of modernity focuses on the belief in reason. The modernists believe that we can understand society through science and reasoning. For that matter, the modernists say that everything is to be understood through science and reason.

Modernity is also about the belief in the capabilities of man. The modernists talk about ‘this worldliness’ as opposed to ‘other worldliness’. Modernity is about the freedom of thought.

Another important aspect of modernity is the separation of politics from religion.

The postmodernists, however, rejected the claims of modernists and their belief in only reason. According to postmodernists, the society cannot be understood as a whole only through science and reason. They give examples such as, after the Holocaust in the Second World War, modernity proved to be a failure- reason could fail there.

Despite the refutations by postmodernists, however, the idea of modernity brought a remarkable revolution in the study of politics and other disciplines of social sciences.

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