What do Modernist art, Freudian psychology, and the Great Depression have in common besides chronological coincidence? They were all, in different ways, symptoms of disruption and a profound sense of unease that pervaded Western culture after World War I. European civilization was powerful and self-confident before the war, master of over 80% of the globe, and at the forefront of science and technology. That civilization emerged from four years of bloodshed economically shattered, politically disunited, and in many ways skeptical of the possibility of further progress. It was in this uncertain context that the most destructive political philosophy in modern history emerged: fascism, and its even more horrific offshoot, Nazism.
Image Citations (Wikimedia Commons):
Nicholas II and George V - Public Domain
Rasputin - Public Domain
Lenin Speech - Public Domain
Klimt The Kiss - Public Domain
Klimt Philosophy - Public Domain
Freud - Public Domain