Postmodernism is an idea that emerged in the early twentieth century as a response to the advancement of modernism. Modernism tended to deny the influence of cultural and social history in its theories and aesthetic endeavors. By contrast, postmodernism emphasized the role of the artist as the sole arbiter of meaning. In this way, art became a public undertaking, with meanings and purposes being determined through the artist’s interpretation of the text.
The basic idea behind postmodernism was that the progress of science and technology had changed the definition of reality. Modernists on the other hand believed that culture had become a product of the technological progress. They maintained that the medium of art was no longer subject to the laws of causality. Consequently, there could be no such thing as objective truth. They therefore held that the boundaries between reality and fiction were porous and subject to constant flux.
Baudrillardian theory is closely related to the break down of the distinction between the living and the non-living. It is postmodern because it examines the effects of technology on human life in large and important cities in the industrialized nations. The book thus suggests that the division between the living and the non-living has been ruptured and the living has come to dominate while the non-living is left out in the cold. This has led to the increasing alienation of the postmodern subject from his or her background, whether this is a result of the growing postmodernity or of the impact of World War I.
The fragmentation of the modern subject has also paved the way for postmodern literature. The fractured world view gave rise to a variety of new theories, each one aimed at analyzing the changing relations between the modern subject and the external world. The most influential among these was the notion of postmodernism, which postulates that the twentieth century is the last century in a linear sense and that a new age is about to emerge. Some of the early works in this new genre were The Wounded Healer, Fragmented Life, and Decay.
Another strand of postmodern literature concerned with the question of how art relates to life. It was not uncommon to read works which discussed the relationship between art and life, especially between the artistic representation of real objects and the social reality of their time. One of the most important precursors to the concept of postmodernism was the artistic reaction to the crumbling of World War I. Artworks like those of Paul Gauguin, Paul Theron and Albert Camus featured military images as well as pictures of the city of Paris, indicative of the fragility of that era’s existence and the desire for order and spectacle. After the war, however, artists tended to distance themselves from the politics of the time and to focus more on the aesthetics of art.
Postmodernists also looked to the past for precedents. A number of examples can be found in the genre of Postmodern poetry, which depicts the progression of artistic ideals through the Ages, with each poem presenting a slice of the progression through time. In the Pre-Raphaelite movement, for example, the idea is that angels had been placed to guard the gates of heaven, but due to the fall of man, they are no longer necessary. These paintings also tend to be highly abstract, even in their description of scale, but this helped to differentiate modernism from postmodernism.
Postmodernists also looked towards the future as a source for inspiration. There is a prevalent theme throughout all of postmodernist writings, and that is the notion of rupture. It is noted that throughout history, humanity has always attempted to control the world around them, and in the end, many attempts have failed. However, in the case of postmodernism, there is no longer any need to control the forces of the world around us. They instead look to the future and try to find meaning in a world that has seemingly decayed and withered away. They are also eager to use their imagination, as is common in all forms of art, to create meaningful symbols that can be seen everywhere in the modern world.
Postmodern art has become quite popular among artists of all different disciplines, from film to poetry, and all other aspects of art. The reason behind this sudden surge in popularity is not difficult to understand. Postmodernism is truly a unique genre of art, and it is one of the most exciting and invigorating types of modern art available today. This style of art is very popular amongst artists who prefer to express themselves using their own style, personality and individualism.