9.2.13

An excellent resource on postmodernism

Broadly defined, postmodernism refers to a specific period of time that began in the 1940s, a style of literature, architecture, art philosophy, or the plight of Western society in post-capitalist age. This movement encompasses a set of critical and rhetorical practices employing concepts such as difference, repetition, and hyperreality to break apart or deconstruct the structural elements achieved through modernism, including temporality, presence, identity, historical progress, epistemic certainty, and meaning achieved through unity.

The term “postmodernism” first entered the philosophical lexicon in 1979, with the publication of The Postmodern Condition, by Jean-François Lyotard, in which Lyotard utilizes Ludwig Wittgenstein’s model of language games and concepts taken from speech act theory to account for “a transformation of the game rules” for science, art, and literature. For Lyotard, postmodern thought can best be summed up as “incredulity towards meta narratives.” According to Lyotard, postmodernists eschew “grand narratives” that attempt to account for, explain, and compartmentalize human life and history; there is no clearly defined, collective meaning and for the postmodern world, there is no mourning of the loss of meaning because the outcome of one’s own experience and condition will necessarily be fallible and relative, rather than exact and universal.

If you wish to pursue the subject further, this page is an excellent resource with many links to sub-topics, that has been nested inside a web portal giving out information on online graduate programs.

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