I have just discovered this hilarious computer programme, the Postmodern Essay Generator that generates anything a post-modernist student could ever want if he is late handing in an essay. Every time you renew this page, you get a completely different essay.
The language and jargon are meaningless, what the French call langue de bois. A friend of mine and fellow undergraduate at Fribourg called this stuff, even when written by humans, intellectual masturbation! It is tempting to react with Enlightenment rationalism and Yorkshire grit, but the response has to be a lot more subtle.
I am presently trying to get my mind around the theory of knowledge in German Idealism and Romanticism. Fortunately, these notions are largely based on Plato and Aristotle, and can be approached by traditional means with enough work. Until I get much clearer in this domain, I would not dream of trying to write anything new on that subject. I am attracted by the late eighteenth-century reaction against materialism and determinism, the human being treated as a machine. God and consciousness precede matter, not the other way round. The fundamental intuitions of Idealism have attracted me, but the more I discover, the more study I have to do. That is quite different from post-modernism, because for me language has its limits, but it’s the only way we have to communicate with each other, to relate, to negotiate and learn from each other. Take the validity away from language and the world will become a shit-hole, literally!
I did wonder if there was a remote link between Romanticism and Post-modernism, a kind of Devil’s Advocate argument that I was treading in dangerous waters. I find no sign of it. The philosophical (if you want to abuse that noble word) roots of post-modernism come from post World War II Paris, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault and Jacques Lacan in particular. This is an interesting article on Post-modernism, giving a humorous criticism of matters like identity politics and Islamic theocracies, which really amount to little more like the ideology of Chinese and North Korean Communism – and of Big Brother.