Saturday, January 13, 2007

Postmodernism 101

Every now and then I allow myself the luxury of one philsophically-indulged, non-topical post, and today is one of those times.

When I was doing my Philosophy Masters couple years back, I was (un)fortunate enough to delve dig deep into postmodernism. To the non-philosophically inclined (and even the non) postmodernism, henceforth pomo, is just a loada arty-farty, left-wing, gobblygook Bullpoo.

Yes, and No. One area where it has related remarkably well to the Real world, is it's prediction of the World Wide Wonderland. Just check out the table below which I culled from "Postmodernism for Beginners" by Jim Powell. This book was published in '98, a time when there were no wiki s, blogger or web 2.0 beta s. But compare this same table to the WWW today and you can't deny that the internet is decidedly Postmodern. Which means that those gibberish-spouting, pomo frenchman (usually) hanging around Parisian coffee shops in the 80s and 90s were actually pretty prophetic. (right column added by Bipolar Guy) :

Next time I embark on one of these philosophical diversions, I'll quote a passage from A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia by Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari, and Brian Massumi (french or what?). This book was published in 1987 - PRE the www (as we know it), and it's predictions of the internet were even more accurate and detailed.

So: I'm not sure what these pomo dudes were on, but it sure gave their visions wings.


  1. In this postmodern information society, there is a lack of uniformity and standards. Victorian engineering brought in specifications for time, measurement, weights, etc. You just have to look at your postmodern table to realise that it NOT WYSIWYG in IE 7.0. (Characters missing down right hand side)

  2. Oooh as if by postmodern magic it is all fixed!

  3. You're probably well aware of deconstruction in post-modern architecture, and the whole Memphis movement in design. If not, imagine a cluttered, plundering collage of forms and styles. It was big in the eighties. Post-modern dance began in the late sixties while Martha Graham and all the modernists were still teaching and occasionally even performing. Visual Art as exemplified by any conceptual sculptor or installation artist has been post-modern since Pop Art became popular. What took the philosophers so long to catch on?

  4. Visit for a little quality post-modern pop of the musical variety. Their podcasts rock!

  5. you absolutely underestimate me BPG. i got it and i got it right.

    where on earth did you see jeans btw?

  6. pomo=scifi gone snooty
    since when is felix a french name? i thought is was germanic, am i way off on that ( very very possible! )hee hee

    it's just labels for theorists fun if you have food on your table

  7. i get it. thank you btw. And you were wrong it IS pretty black OR white, since both do not coexist.

    but on the mean time, you're either at a green or blue or another thing. But one day the spectrum will turn into either black or white.

    And thank you for the compliments.


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