Re: unusual language

Michael S. Allen (allen.181@OSU.EDU)
Wed, 9 Oct 1996 11:14:23 -0400

Beth's operative definition(s) is/are (already pomo enough for you?) too
much to leave alone:

>My operative definition is that postmodernism is *image in search of

This makes sense for Baudrillard and others. Just read a neat/strange book
by the Krockers (and I'm probably misspelling...):_Hacking the Future_.
Sort of "Pomo theory meets the Net and has a good time."
>My colleague here says that postmodernism is "post me" and that a person
>who utters "post modern" is shirking his/her responsibility to come to
>grips with the epoch. He says it's just the soft underbelly of the
>baby-boomers with no gumption, no backbone (and it's too late in life to
>be growing a spine). -- He's saying all this while I'm typing. I think
>I'll invite him to join this conversation! --

Here, I'd disagree. I'd see "post me" as stepping out of overly
navel-gazing modernist elitism and puritan fascination with the purity of
self. I'd say pomo is more about how many different selves we are--how
many ways there are to read a text (for Bob), how many different "texts" we
are from what we see, what we live in, how we live. It's opening up to
other ways of saying things, other ways of being--it's hypertext instead of
linear print.

And, on a political note: I think you can find no better example of
American angst-Puritanism vs, pomo-slipperiness than Dole and Clinton.
Every time I see Dole, I see my Dad--same honesty, same conviction, same
narrowness. And every time I see Clinton, I'm not sure who I'm watching:
is this the earnest over achiever from Hope, Ark.? the glad-handing
candidate? the guy with such wide and wildly different taste in friends and
associates (think of the differences between Al Gore and Jim McDougall!!)?
the policy wonk? the Internet policeman (the cliper chip) or the
Web-promoter for schools? Who *is* this guy? Maybe the perfect pomo
candidate--we see in him, more than most politicians, what we need/want to

Michael Allen