Pronunciation: (mod'ur-niz"um), [key]
1. modern character, tendencies, or values; adherence to or sympathy with what is modern.
2. a modern usage or characteristic.
3. (cap.) Theol.
a. the movement in Roman Catholic thought that sought to interpret the teachings of the Church in the light of philosophic and scientific conceptions prevalent in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: condemned by Pope Pius X in 1907.
b. the liberal theological tendency in Protestantism in the 20th century.
4. (sometimes cap.) a deliberate philosophical and practical estrangement or divergence from the past in the arts and literature occurring esp. in the course of the 20th century and taking form in any of various innovative movements and styles.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.