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What is postmodernism and its main themes?

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Postmodernism is a complicated term, or set of ideas, one that has only emerged as an area of academic study since the mid-1980s. Postmodernism is hard to define, because it is a concept that appears in a wide variety of disciplines or areas of study, including art, architecture, music, film, literature, sociology, communications, fashion, and technology. It's hard to locate it temporally or historically, because it's not clear exactly when postmodernism begins.


Postmodernism has been variously referred to as a cultural theory, a way of life, an expression of disenchantment with modernism, a loosely bound collection of anti-modern ideas and as a social deconstruction - just to name a few designations. Early postmodernists include Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Heidegger. Jean Francis Lyotard, Gillies Deleuze, Jacques Derrida and Michael Foucault are contemporary postmodern thinkers. Convinced postmodernists often assert that post modernism is not any of the aforementioned - not an explanatory system, or text of knowledge, at all. This variety of overlapping and conflicting definitions highlights one of the main paradoxes of ...

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What is postmodernism?