Postmodernism

Posted by: Richenda at Wednesday November 14, 2007 in

I went to college in the nineties, so I know what postmodernism is. It’s that abstract thing—the name for a mindset or worldview—that we all picked up from just being alive in the 20th century and supposedly we are all trapped inside it.

This intangible thing is like a brain funnel. Imagine ‘modernism’ has a shape. Now imagine that shape is a hat. Now imagine that the second we are born, the nurses clap this ‘modernism hat’ on our heads and we can never take it off. The hat covers our whole head and all our senses. The hat does not have eye holes, you have to see through it, and all you see is filtered by it. Same with taste and smell. And as your head grows, your skull and your brain conform to the shape of the hat. In the end, your brain is ‘modernism’ shaped. (And so is everyone else’s.)

Then, someone comes along, someone with a modernism-shaped head, and says that post-modernism is something new. lol. I know this isn’t a popular pov, but in my humble opinion, ‘post-modernism’ is a ‘modernism’ hat. We imagine that it’s not, however. We think it’s ‘new.’ More intellectual. You know you are a postmodernist if you get to feel smug and self-indulgent inside your modernist shaped brain. You’ve got the goods on everyone else! lol. You see their follies and…Something Must Be Done About it!

But… must we “do something!” Or is that’s yet another modern perspective?

But, okay. Let’s get serious. What should we do?
(1) quit worrying about it so much and
(2) quit obsessing while we’re at it.

Derrida was a genius, true, but he was an annoying genius. That whole ‘gift’ thing is a nasty bag of snakes. Watch while a linguistics professor takes that Russian nesting-doll thing straight into the crotch of insanity. Yup, Derrida is to modernism what Ogres are to onions. lol. It’s pointless, and that’s the point. Arg. And it just doesn’t get us anywhere.

[I’ll have to interrupt myself and admit that it does get us a little teensy bit of somewhere. It gets us zen. If we let the complexity lead us to nothingness (the sound of one hand clapping) instead of analysis, then perhaps what postmodernism offers us is the opportunity to unravel.]

Anyway.

Part of the trouble is that we all just can’t shut up about it. We’re stuck and we don’t care who knows it. Modernism brain isn’t a new concept to try out anymore. It doesn’t listen and all its ideas have already been thought up. It’s old hat. The thing is totally unresponsive and we’ve all become cement-heads as a result. Being stuck is unsatisfying and uncomfortable.

So, it’s good to recognize that your brain has been formed into a particular shape, and that this shape has limitations. But it does not follow that there is anything ‘wrong’ with that and it must be diagnosed and fixed (and taken out behind the barn and beaten half to death). We’re HUMANS. Human brains are goopy and full of neurons and they are supposed to take a shape. What modernistpostmodernism (yes, I wrote that on purpose) fails to grasp is that this, too, will be alright. All that anxiety, all that worry over how to think…lol. So don’t think.

Imagine now that the modernism hat is getting heavy. A cool rain has started. That hat is soaking up that rain, it’s getting thick and squishy, and, like sodden paper mache, it starts to pull apart and slide away in thickish, milky chunks. It splashes ‘plonk’ onto the ground. Can you feel it between your toes? Just let it go.

Fear Not! There are angels in our (mist)midst.

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