Life on Facebook: A Postmodern Phenomenon
Ever since the end of the modernist era, many have began to stereotype contemporary artists and writers as being too “postmodern.” But aren’t we all? The typical person today normally would not identify as being postmodern; however, in truth, they frequently experience postmodern happenings in their day-to-day lives not only in their own personality and behavior, but also through their actions and interactions with others. The characteristics of postmodernism may be more simply explained by using the theories of the French postmodernist philosopher Jean Baudrillard. Elements of Jean Baudrillard’s ideas on postmodernism are becoming increasingly apparent in today’s society. Baudrillard often emphasized the themes of relative truth, simulation, and hyper-reality. These themes have begun to arise through the cloud of ambiguity within the inner workings of the popular social networking site Facebook. Facebook’s profiles, pictures, and newsfeed are all evidence of Baudrillard’s notions on postmodernism Thus, the concepts of Baudrillard’s postmodernism help to reflect the behaviors and culture of Facebook as it is seen today.
Postmodernism started as a huge movement that was a transition away from the modernist era. Modernism was about realism, higher truth, and a hope for a utopia, whereas postmodernism is a lot more ambiguous on such matters (Gould). Postmodernism recognizes that everyone experiences life differently, and that one’s own experience is completely relative and may or may not be a truly accurate, certain, or the universal truth. Nevertheless, one may find more “truth” in a fallible experience than in abstract ideals.
Jean Baudrillard was a French philosopher that dedicated much of his work to exploring and theorizing postmodern principles. Though his work was original, it often was a bit controversial; however, it helped to get him noticed. Baudrillard was made, perhaps, most famous by his...
Cited: Baudrillard, quoted by Goukd, Kevin. “Jean Baudrillard and Hyper-Reality.” First Year Writing and Rhetoric 1150. University of Colorado at Boulder. Boulder, 8 February 2013. Powerpoint presentation.
Catfish. Dir. Joost and Schulman. Universal Pictures, 2010. Film.
Gould, Kevin. First Year Writing and Rhetoric 1150. University of Colorado at Boulder. Boulder, 8 February 2013. Lecture.
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