For a better experience on MUBI, update your browser.

A Timeline for Modernity

by Kim Packard
Created April 2011 Gallery of Tree Rings This section of a longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) was cut from a very eroded stump on the edge of Lake Louise in southern Georgia, U.S.A. (photo © H.D. Grissino-Mayer). The tree rings date back to A.D. 1421! link 1439 Invention of the printing press 1481 Establishment of the Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition 1491 Treaty of Granada 1492 Columbus discovers America (This is also the year when the Jews were expulsed from Spain. Alhambra Decree ) 1525/1527 Upon the death of their father, Huayna Capac , in 1525 or 1527, the brothers Atahualpa Inca and Huáscar Inca were granted two separate… Read more

Created April 2011

Gallery of Tree Rings
This section of a longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) was cut from a very eroded stump on the edge of Lake Louise in southern Georgia, U.S.A. (photo © H.D. Grissino-Mayer). The tree rings date back to A.D. 1421! link

1439 Invention of the printing press
1481 Establishment of the Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition
1491 Treaty of Granada
1492 Columbus discovers America (This is also the year when the Jews were expulsed from Spain. Alhambra Decree )
1525/1527 Upon the death of their father, Huayna Capac , in 1525 or 1527, the brothers Atahualpa Inca and Huáscar Inca were granted two separate realms of the Inca Empire: Atahualpa, the northern portion centered on Quito, and Huáscar, the southern portion centered on Cuzco.
1549 Francis Xavier visits Japan
1558 Meditations by Marcus Aurelius first published in Zurich by Wilhelm Holzmann, from a manuscript copy that is now lost.
1571 Battle of Lepanto
1580 Essays (A passages) by Michel de Montaigne published
1599 Shakespeare produces Henry V, Julius Caesar, As You Like It and Hamlet NPR link
1605 First volume of Don Quixote published
1620 Mayflower sails to the New World
1634 Trading post of Dejima built in Nagasaki, Japan
1637 René Descartes’s Discourse on Method published
1642-51 English Civil War
1651 Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes published
1683 Battle of Vienna
1687 Principia Mathematica by Isaac Newton published
1689 An Essay Concerning Human Understanding published by John Locke
1739 A Treatise of Human Nature by David Hume published
1748 The Spirit of the Laws published anonymously by Montesquieu
1762 Of The Social Contract, Or Principles of Political Right by Jean-Jacques Rousseau published
1776 American Independence
1781 Emmanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason published
1789 French Revolution MUBI list- Bastille Day
1789 U.S. Bill of Rights
-———————————————————————-
1824 Champollion publishes Précis du système hiéroglyphique which gave birth to the field of modern Egyptology
1825 Braille writing system for the blind devised by Louis Braille
1852-1857 Baron Haussman’s renovation of Paris
1853-57 Franklin Pierce, president of the United States
1854 Japan forced to end seclusion when Commodore Perry arrives with the Black Ships
1857 Charles Baudelaire ‘s Les Fleurs du mal published.
1857-61 James Buchanan, president of the United States
1858 Keio University established
1859 Darwin’s On the Origin of Species publshed
1859 John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty published
-———————————————————————-
1861-65 Abraham Lincoln, president of the United States
1862 Hugo writes Les Misérables
1862-1863 Édouard Manet paints Le déjeuner sur l’herbe
1863 Gettysburg Address
1865 Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland published
1865 Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
1867 Alaska Purchase
1867 End of Shogunate and restoration of imperial rule in Japan modernization of Japan begins
1869 Completion of the transcontinental railroad
1871 Unification of Germany by Prime Minister of Prussia, Otto von Bismarck
1887 Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes first published
1888 Erik Satie composes Gymnopédie
1889 Paris Universal Exposition, Birth of Eiffel Tower
1898 Annexation of Hawaii
1890 Vincent Van Gogh dies
-—————————————————————-
1893 Antonin Dvorak composes the New World Symphony
1898 Discovery of radium
1898-1901 Boxer Rebellion
1900 Planck’s Constant
1901-09 Theodore Roosevelt, president of the United States
1903 Kishinev pogrom
1905 Einstein’s E=MC squared
1906 Alfred Dreyfus exonerated
1907 Indiana passes the first eugenics – based compulsory sterilization law in the world.
1907 Picasso paints Les Demoiselles d’Avignon
1907 Rudyard Kipling wins Nobel Prize for Literature
1911 Riciotto Canudo’s Manifesto- The Birth of the Sixth Art
1912 Titanic sinks
1913 Rabindranath Tagore wins Nobel Prize in Literature
1914 Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria at Sarajevo
1914-1918 World War I MUBI list World Wars I & II
1915 Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity published
1915 Franz Kafka writes The Metamorphosis
1916 Trans-National America published by Randolph Bourne Cultural pluralism
1917-20 First red scare
1917 Battle of Aqaba
1918 Nicholas II of Russia and family executed
1918 Woodrow Wilson’s 14 Points
1919 Treaty of Versailles
1920 One Week, a Buster Keaton film
1922 Tutankhamun’s tomb discovered
1922 Republic of Ireland established
1923 Great Kanto Earthquake
1925 Sergei Einsenstein’s film Battleship Potemkin
1926 Kafka publishes The Castle
1927 Execution of Sacco and Vanzetti
1927 Charles Lindbergh flies the Spirit of St. Louis across the Atlantic Ocean to Paris
1927 Fritz Lang’s film Metropolis
1928 Roland Garros opens
1928 Dirac equation
1929 Hubble’s law derived
-————————————————————————————-
1931 Japan invades Manchuria
1933 Dachau opens
1936-1939 Spanish Civil War
1937 Picasso paints Guernica
1938 Kritallnacht
1938-2003 VW Beetle
1939 The Rules of the Game, a film by Jean Renoir
1939-1975 Franco’s authoritarian regime in Spain
1939-1945 World War II MUBI list World Wars I & II
1940 Mers-el-Kébir
1942-45 Japanese occupation of Indonesia
1942-45 Japanese-American Internment in the U.S.
1943 Le Petit Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry published
1944 Oradour-sur-Glane
1940’s and the 50’s McCarthyism
1945 Atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
1945-52 Occupation of Japan
1957 Nuremberg Code
1947-91 The Cold War
1947 Camus writes The Plague
1947 Partition of India
1948 Assassination of Mahatma Gandhi
1948 State of Israel established
1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights
1948-1949 Samuel Beckett writes Waiting for Godot
1950 Kurosawa Akira’s film Rashomon
1950-1951 China invades Tibet
1950-1953 The Korean War
1951 Picasso paints Massacre in Korea
1951-55 Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
1951 The River, a film by Jean Renoir
1953 Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reach the summit of Mount Everest
1953 Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation
1953 Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations translated and published
1954 Ernest Hemingway wins Nobel Prize for Literature
1954 Brown vs. Board of Education
1955 Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat on a bus
1955-1975 Vietnam War
1957 Albert Camus wins Nobel Prize in Literature
1957 Sputnik 1
1958 Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers record Moanin’
1959 Dalai Lama exiled
-—————————————————————————————-
1959 Crown Prince of Japan weds a commoner for the first time in Japan’s history
1959 Hawaii becomes a state
1959-69 Charles de Gaulle, President of the French Republic and Co-Prince of Andorra
1960 Saint-John Perse wins Nobel Prize in Literature
1960 Harper Lee publishes To Kill a Mockingbird
1960 Birth control pill approved in the U.S.
1960-1964 Ikeda Hayato Prime Minister of Japan
1961-1990 Berlin wall German reunification
1961 Yuri Gagarin first man in space
1962 Independence of Algeria
-————————————————————————-
1962-1975 U.S. participates in the Vietnam War
1962 The Exterminating Angel, a film by Buñuel
1962 The Trial, a film by Hitchcock
1963 The Birds, a film by Hitchcock
1963 8-1/2, a film by Frederico Fellini
1963 Assassination of John F. Kennedy
1963-69 Lyndon B. Johnson, president of the United States
1964-1972 Sato Eisaku Prime Minister of Japan
1966 Agnon wins Nobel Prize for Literature
1967 Six-Day War
1968 May 1968 in France
1968 Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr..
1968 2001: A Space Odyssey, a film by Stanley Kubrick
1969 Moon Landing
1969 Samuel Beckett wins Nobel Prize in Literature
1969-74 Richard Nixon, president of the United States
1969-74 Georges Pompidou , president of France
1970 Mishima commits suicide by the sword
1971 Pablo Neruda wins Nobel Prize in Literature
1972 Munich Massacre
1973-77 Henry Kissinger U.S. Secretary of State
1973 Roe vs. Wade
-——————————————————————————————————————————
1991 World Wide Web launched
1993 Creation of the European Union
1994 Channel Tunnel opens
1998-2002 Rate of cosmic expansion observed to be accelerating
Hubble discoveries- dark energy
2009 Barack Obama 44th President of the United States
2013 Higgs boson discovered

The question is, is modernity still ongoing? Is postmodernity distinct from or a part of modernity?
In progress; please suggest influential films that reflect the zeitgeist of the 20th century and mark the development of the seventh art.

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock S’io credesse che mia risposta fosse A persona che mai tornasse al mondo Questa fiamma staria sensa piu scosse. Ma perciocche giammai di questo fondo Non torno vivo alcun, s’i’odo il vero Sensa tema d’infamia ti rispondo. Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table; Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question . . . Oh, do not ask, ‘What is it?’ Let us go and make our visit. In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes, The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes, Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening, Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains, Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys, Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap, And seeing that it was a soft October night, Curled once about the house, and fell asleep. And indeed there will be time For the yellow smoke that slides along the street, Rubbing its back upon the window-panes; There will be time, there will be time To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet; There will be time to murder and create, And time for all the works and days of hands That lift and drop a question on your plate; Time for you and time for me, And time yet for a hundred indecisions, And for a hundred visions and revisions, Before the taking of a toast and tea. In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. And indeed there will be time To wonder, ‘Do I dare?’ and, ‘Do I dare?’ Time to turn back and descend the stair, With a bald spot in the middle of my hair— [They will say: ‘How his hair is growing thin!’] My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin, My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin— [They will say: ‘But how his arms and legs are thin!’] Do I dare Disturb the universe? In a minute there is time For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. For I have known them all already, known them all— Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons, I have measured out my life with coffee spoons; I know the voices dying with a dying fall Beneath the music from a farther room. So how should I presume? And I have known the eyes already, known them all— The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase, And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin, When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall, Then how should I begin To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways? And how should I presume? And I have known the arms already, known them all— Arms that are braceleted and white and bare [But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!] Is it perfume from a dress That makes me so digress? Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl. And should I then presume? And how should I begin? . . . . . Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows? . . . I should have been a pair of ragged claws Scuttling across the floors of silent seas. . . . . And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully! Smoothed by long fingers, Asleep . . . tired . . . or it malingers Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me. Should I, after tea and cakes and ices, Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis? But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed, Though I have seen my head [grown slightly bald] brought in upon a platter I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter; I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker, And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker, And in short, I was afraid. And would it have been worth it, after all, After the cups, the marmalade, the tea, Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me, Would it have been worth while To have bitten off the matter with a smile, To have squeezed the universe into a ball To roll it toward some overwhelming question, To say: ‘I am Lazarus, come from the dead, Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all’— If one, settling a pillow by her head, Should say: ‘That is not what I meant at all. That is not it, at all.’ And would it have been worth it, after all, Would it have been worth while, After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets, After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor— And this, and so much more?— It is impossible to say just what I mean! But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen: Would it have been worth while If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl, And turning toward the window, should say: ‘That is not it at all, That is not what I meant at all.’ No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be; Am an attendant lord, one that will do To swell a progress, start a scene or two Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool, Deferential, glad to be of use, Politic, cautious, and meticulous; Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse; At times, indeed, almost ridiculous— Almost, at times, the Fool. I grow old . . . I grow old . . . I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled. Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach? I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. I do not think that they will sing to me. I have seen them riding seaward on the waves Combing the white hair of the waves blown back When the wind blows the water white and black. We have lingered in the chambers of the sea By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown Till human voices wake us, and we drown. - T.S. Eliot (1915) Study Guide for Prufrock

Ebert’s list of 10 most influential films in history

Perimeter Institute Public Lecture Freeman Dyson—Living Through Four Revolutions

Read less