Wednesday, October 15, 2008

post-postmodernism an abbridged introduction

Post-postmodernism applies to a vast number of categories of thought including but not limited to developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture which are emerging from and reacting to postmodernism....










a common positive theme of existing attempts to define post-postmodernism is that faith, trust, dialogue, performance or sincerity can work to transcend postmodern irony. The following definitions, which vary widely in depth, focus and scope, are listed in the chronological order of their appearance.

In 1995, the landscape architect and urban planner Tom Turner issued a book-length call for a post-postmodern turn in urban planning.[12] Turner criticizes the postmodern credo of “anything goes” and suggests that “the built environment professions are witnessing the gradual dawn of a post-Postmodernism that seeks to temper reason with faith.”

In his 1999 book on Russian postmodernism the Russian-American Slavist Mikhail Epstein[15] Epstein believes that postmodernist aesthetics will eventually become entirely conventional and provide the foundation for a new, non-ironic kind of poetry, which he describes using the prefix "trans": suggested that postmodernism “is […] part of a much larger historical formation,” which he calls “postmodernity.”

The term post-millennialism was introduced in 2000 by the American cultural theorist Eric Gans[3] to describe the epoch after postmodernism in ethical and socio-political terms. Gans associates postmodernism closely with “victimary thinking,” which he defines as being based on a non-negotiable ethical opposition between perpetrators and victims arising out of the experience of Auschwitz and Hiroshima. In Gans’s view, the ethics of postmodernism is derived from identifying with the peripheral victim and disdaining the utopian center occupied by the perpetrator. Postmodernism in this sense is marked by a victimary politics that is productive in its opposition to modernist utopianism and totalitarianism but unproductive in its resentment of capitalism and liberal democracy, which he sees as the long-term agents of global reconciliation.

A systematic attempt to define post-postmodernism in aesthetic terms has been undertaken by the German-American Slavist Raoul Eshelman in his book Performatism, or the End of Postmodernism (Aurora, Colorado: Davies Group 2008, ISBN 978-1-888570-41-0).[18][7] attempts to show that works in the new epoch are constructed in such a way as to bring about a unified, aesthetically mediated experience of transcendence. Performatism does this by creating closed works of art that force viewers to identify with simple, opaque characters or situations and to experience beauty, love, belief and transcendence under particular, artificial conditions.

In popular culture, the movement that is loosely called “New Sincerity” displays salient features of post-postmodernism in its opposition to postmodern irony and in its attempt to promote good feeling. One of its most notable proponents is the radio talk-show host Jesse Thorn, who issued a brief “Manifesto for the New Sincerity” on his blog in 2006.[8] He states we should “think of [the New Sincerity] as irony and sincerity combined like Voltron, to form a new movement of astonishing power.”

In 2006 the British scholar Alan Kirby formulated an entirely pessimistic socio-cultural assessment of post-postmodernism that he calls “pseudo-modernism.”[19] Kirby associates pseudo-modernism with the triteness and shallowness resulting from the instantaneous, direct, and superficial participation in culture made possible by the internet, mobile phones, interactive television and similar means:

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