Postmodernism Essay

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Postmodernism IHAB HASSAN.. There is a lot of disagreement over the meaning of these terms but the bottom line is that postmodernism is against almost all the tenets of modernism. For example, modernism believes in rational thought while postmodernists believe everything is irrational. Modernism places a strong emphasis on science, whereas postmodernists are anti-scientific. Modernists believe that there are universal values and tend to be somewhat optimistic whereas postmodernists believe that only local values have importance. Modernists favor organization; postmodernists believe life is chaotic and fragmented. Modernists reflect the values of European or Western thought whereas postmodernists believe in multiculturalism. Modernists are objective; postmodernists are subjective. Modernists believe that life is purposeful; postmodernists believe that life is meaningless or that meaning is purely subjective and relative. Modernists believe one can define morality whereas postmodernists believe morality is relative. Modernists are analytical whereas postmodernists are rhetorical. Modern art is characterized by simplicity, elegance and streamlined design but postmodern art is decorative and elaborate. Modernist philosophy is determined by cause and effect but postmodernists believe in chance. Modernists are linear thinkers; postmodernists are circular thinkers or haphazard thinkers. Modernists believe in permanence; postmodernists believe in transience. Modernists believe that truth is objective; postmodernists believe that truth is relative and socially constructed. Modernists are not very political whereas postmodernists politicize everything. What does Postmodernism mean? When trying to answer the question, “What does postmodernism mean?” it is important to remember that postmodernism can only be described, not defined. Attempting to define it violates the

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