How did World War I affect philosophy?

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This is a huge question that can't be adequately dealt with short of a book length treatise, but an outline of a few of the effects of the war can be touched on. First, World War I was so obviously a huge mistake and a wasteful bloodbath that left European and American philosophy reeling. Nineteenth-century optimism and belief in progress had been undergirded by enlightenment notions of philosophic rationalism, a belief that humankind could gather the correct data and make decisions that would work in favor of making the world an ever-better place to live.

World War I punched a hole in the idea of rationalism. As a result, philosophical or related systems that took into account the dark irrationality of the human psyche gained traction, such as Freud's theories of the unconscious. These were, strictly speaking, psychology, but they had a huge impact on early- to mid-twentieth century philosophical thought. Philosophical nihilism gained more traction: nihilism rejects value-based thinking...

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