human beings, human limits


Freddie deBoer used to blog at, and may again someday. Now he blogs here.

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6 Responses

  1. Bob says:

    For a spectacularly funny book on postmodernism, a defense of, I recommend Giles Goat-Boy by John Barth.Report

  2. Chris Dierkes says:

    A question that often occurs to those of us who are concerned with what is clumsily referred to as “the postmodern” is how the hell anyone is actually taught about or exposed to this stuff at all.

    In my case, I have a graduate background in philosophy, so for me it came in that way. Which is not the norm I suppose. I would disagree that pomo wasn’t fashionable in the 90s (and still is)–at least within humanities departments of many of a major US university.

    Another topic for another day would be how postmodernism is really caught up in US culture wars. In the European context, where most of the original thinkers came from, the majority of them are better labeled post-structuralist, and have more to do with a kind of post-Marxist analysis of the Euro left in the 60-80s.

    While they are some relations they are very different beasts. Derrida’s work is much more political, social, philosophical and got interpreted somehow in the US as literature. (Where postmodern theory dominates in academia). Mostly I guess because there are basically two wings to one party in the US and the social-political element of the US can never be deconstructed. But some fiction could be.

    iow, postmodernism in the US I think is much more built around aesthetic sense (“fashionable” or not), identity, posture, and therefore it is communicated primarily through the media.Report

  3. E.D. Kain says:

    I might say post-modernity is an accident of inevitability, i.e. with the confluence of mass-media, globalization and modernity we were simply bound to reach both a philosophical and aesthetic post-modernism. And I’m not sure any of us can escape it, even its critics….Report

  4. Will says:

    One of the reasons I think postmodern philosophy gets such a bad rap is inaccessibility. I was stuck judging a debate tournament this weekend and had to slog through some Foucault, Deleuze and Guattari (among others), and that stuff is difficult to imbibe, particularly for a non-specialist audience.Report

  5. Freddie says:

    Oh, no question about it, Will– a lot of the damage to postmodernism is self-inflicted. Inexcusably, at times.Report