TED Conversations

Simon Peter Debbarma

Student of History, Desire Machine Collective

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Is postmodernity dead? What comes after postmodernity?

I read this following passage from a website a few days back and it got me thinking,

"This topic is of particular interest to me, the question of what comes next was largely the impetus for starting this blog. It is very clear that postmodernism isn’t dead, just like modernism or classicism aren’t dead either. People will continue to produce postmodern works or take postmodern approaches to understanding culture, just like they continue to do in the mode of modernism or any other -ism.

What is changing is that postmodernism will no longer be the dominant form. The new dominant form is emerging.

But what has happened over the past decade is that postmodernism became, well, obvious. Irony saturated everything, the questioning of all beliefs and narratives became the default posture. We all came to accept that identity is something constructed, and we even embrace new tools like blogs, Facebook, and the internet that allow us not only to construct that identity with great ease efficiency but also to project it to the world in ever more refined iterations.

At some point, however, it stopped working. It stopped being relevant. Or maybe people just got tired of it. At some point the response to the postmodern itself became “Whatever…” Maybe we saw that everyone could do it, or because we felt at some level it was superficial semiotic play. Postmodern works became almost self-deconstructing, and appreciation of culture devolved into nothing more than solving puzzles by following clues left deliberately by authors. Or maybe it was a heightened sense of reality after 9-11, or maybe the Great Recession makes the cultural pastiche central to postmodern culture seem trite. Or maybe it’s simply exhausted.

Postmodernism isn’t dead, but it is no longer the vanguard. Then what is? What comes next? What are it’s characteristics?"

I think what's next is Transmodernity but I need more knowledge regarding the "next". What are your opinions? Whats your predictions?

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    May 28 2014: I honestly think that a more pragmatic-themed movement is going to take the forefront, as nowadays we tend to focus more on function over form and try to take a more rational approach to life.
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    May 8 2014: .
    .Naturalism comes.!
    Or, we go self-extiction.
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    R H 30+

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    May 7 2014: From my viewpoint, the use of irony is usually satirical. Deconstruction and image construction has shown to be - at best - exploratory and at worst vanity. I see 'postmodernity' as expired because it has been seen for what it is: a vehicle for the expression of self-worth. What we now have is the 'confidence' movement. Where I am 'sure' and my value is 'unquestionable'. So with that viewpoint, I would speculate that what comes next is a 're-renaissance' with high-technology as the new medium. We are transforming what it means to be human, just like we transformed what it means to have faith in that era. just a thought...
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    May 6 2014: There is only ever the next moment and that is where you will find yourself because the moment it took to read it this has passed onto the next.

    A good part of your brain is actually concentrated on calculating the next plan of action for the next moment.
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    May 6 2014: What is next? We shall see.
  • May 6 2014: Postmodernism isn't dead…it never existed. It's a desire to ensconce academic retrospection to justify hard earned knowledge that is struggling to adjust to the pace of change.

    Transmodernity is an interesting supposition, but it still clings to the antiquated belief that modern can be defined by post-postulation. It can not! We don't live in modern times. We live in the moment.

    I believe current digital social networks hasn't helped define our identities. It has fragmented our identities. Borrowing from old narratives…

    We are lost in the woods leaving crumbs to find our way back… but all we encounter is an endless number of people leaving crumbs. We make sense of life through our narratives. If anything, what we have encountered today is the death of significant narratives.

    The good news… our stories frame a constructed reality, and fortunately reality remains unchanged. And happenstance would suggest we may yet discover a greater happiness aligned with the universe that shrugs off our attempts to place our selves at the centre of it.
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    May 6 2014: punk is next.

    a smashing of what is popular until the smashing becomes unpopular for being too popular and the cycle starts again
  • May 5 2014: Postpostmodernity of course.
  • May 5 2014: About 25 years ago, I got past postmodernism when I started deconstructing deconstructions and questioning the necessity of relativism on the basis that relativism is just a Western cultural bias. After all, if deconstruction works, then one must apply it to deconstruction, itself. Nothing gets privileged status, including the idea that deconstruction or postmodernism are valid.

    What is next is a "return" to a 1950s lifestyle that never actually existed, where women desperately seek out men to adore and serve while the men smoke cigars and quaff cocktails.