Postmodernism is criticized because it is counterintuitive. Traditionalists, in general, cannot stand it and see it as a symptom of decay and degradation.

For me, however, it becomes closer the further it goes, to be honest. Firstly, it’s not as crazy as it may seem, at least not much crazier than any philosophy in general. Any philosophy is counterintuitive, and that’s the joy of engaging with it. It’s thinking on the edge, somewhat like a sport discipline, such as a marathon or chess.

Postmodernism may appear wild, but so did the thinking of Socrates, who, as we know, was sentenced to death by his fellow citizens, and the works of Spinoza, whom his own Jewish community called a “threat to piety and morality,” and the efforts of Pico della Mirandola, who was poisoned by church officials. Philosophy is madness to a normal person, and that’s normal, so the reaction to postmodernism is a reaction to live philosophical thought.


Moreover, delving into postmodernism reveals many parallels with classical philosophy, and you understand that the roots are precisely there, in the classics, despite the fact that postmodernism itself reimagined the concept of roots as rhizome.

For example, the utterly wild idea of the subject as a multitude. We live our lives, assuming ourselves to be identical to ourselves; it is natural for us to consider all our experience as the experience of one and the same subject, our “self.” And then suddenly Deleuze comes out and says that our unconscious is plural, that the “I” is actually “we,” that it’s a tribe, not an individual. Madness? Certainly. But try to argue coherently that he is wrong, it won’t work. Open Hobbes’ “Leviathan,” and you won’t find a substantially unified subject there. For him, a person was nothing but a name and a history — a stream in which one matter is replaced by another, one form is succeeded by the next. Open Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason,” and you’ll discover that the unity of experience you undergo is nothing but the result of pre-settings of our mind, much like how the colors we observe are predetermined by the structure of our eyes.

In general, don’t believe every critic of postmodernism. Postmodernism is incredibly interesting, and perhaps, for understanding our wild times, it fits best.

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