A few months ago, I read a short quotation by Ayn Rand in a comments thread that I found insightful. It is from a speech that she gave in A.D. 1960:
The truth about the intellectual state of the modern world . . . which distinguishes it from other periods of cultural crises, is the fact that what people are seeking is not the answers to problems, but the reassurance that no answers are possible.
According to the comment, you may find this in Rand’s Philosophy: Who Needs It. I sent the quote to my friend Andrew, who replied so:
I think she’s right about the post-modern world. But it seems to me that the modernism, of which I assume she is a proponent, has the opposite flaw. It treats the perennial unpleasantries of the human condition as though they were problems to be answered, when, in fact, no answers are possible. So it’s almost like the Hegelian dialectic in reverse. First there was a reasonable synthesis, then with the Enlightenment, an overly simplistic thesis, and now with post-modernity, an oversimplified antithesis. And I’m sure that when we return to the reasonable synthesis of past ages, we’ll call it progress.
May such progress come quickly!