Marxism and Postmodernism

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapterpeer-review

Abstract

In certain respects the so-called 'postmodern' condition is easy to characterise. Essentially it refers to the break-up of the Cold War landscapes and to the gradual dissolution of those globalising ideol- ogies which underpinned them. Now what is tending to replace these ideologies is not the affirmation of some new universalistic idea but rather an increasing diversification of particularistic identities and political demands constituted around new sites of antagonism: gender, sexual, environmental, ethnic, cultural and so on. Thus, according to Lyotard, the new spirit of the age is marked by a deep suspicion of 'metanarrativity': that is to say, a suspicion of all those attempts to establish a unified language of truth to which we could refer the diversity and richness of human culture and historical potential. In paradoxical terms we might say that what current developments are tending to bring about is an end of 'endisms' - i.e. all those grand narratives proclaiming some sort of end (such as Bell's 'end of ideology' and Fukuyama's 'end of history') - and increasingly the historical and provisional character of all social order and identity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMarxism and Social Science
EditorsAndrerw Gamble
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.
Chapter4
Pages61-84
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)978-0-333-65596-2
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 1999

Keywords

  • Marxism, Postmodernity, Postmarxism, Deconstruction, Hegemony, Gramsci, Laclau and Mouffe

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