Re: unusual language [postmodernism]

Eric Crump (wleric@SHOWME.MISSOURI.EDU)
Wed, 9 Oct 1996 12:25:40 -0500

On Wed, 9 Oct 1996, Beth W. Baldwin wrote:
-->Many frustrations arise when trying to understand pomo because if you buy
-->into the idea that defining itself is problemation, you may end up in some
-->sort of weird spin-out, or infinite regress, that can lead to a shirking
-->of responsibility -- throwing up one's hands and saying "well, nothing
-->*can* have meaning, so why bother." This is the nihilistic extreme of

True 'nuff. Or you may end up in a weird spin-out of infinite progress!
or, (since 'progress' implies movement up some hierarchic or evolutionary
scale) maybe we oughta call it infinite vertiginous simultaneous motility
(so as not to disappoint expectations of langauge excess and obscurity).

But what I mean to say is that nihilistic conclusions seem to me to be a
matter of coming at pomo from a particular direction and with a particular
(modernist/Englightenment) set of expectations. Nihilism isn't the only
nor necessarily the likely result of immersion in pomo theory. You didn't
say it was. You said it was possible, and it is. But I'm just adding some
mention of other possibilities, like invigoration, rejuvenation,
liberation so as to discourage any conclusion jumping.

don't worry. be happy. do worry. be happy. pomo gots room for them all!
disrupting the privileged position of 'defining' is understandably scary,
but it presents many new possibilities, making it worth the risk.

--Eric Crump