The Problem with Postmodern
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Politics and Activism

The Problem with Postmodern

And what kind of changes our generation needs to make.

The Problem with Postmodern
Natalyn Chamberlain

As a generation, I think we all know we have been stereotyped. We are the children of the 60s and 70s kids, who were trying to figure out life after the 60s hippies died out. They wanted more for us than what they had growing up, but they also had a hard time saying no to us. Some of these parents were still following the peace and love mentality of the 60s. These parenting styles all combine to create us and who we are: the Postmodern 90s kids.

As 90s kids, we grew up with lots of changes, be it the technological climb to the computers and phones today or all the changes in artistic styles and mediums. All around us the world was growing and people were finding new ways to express themselves. They were "finding" themselves and creating answers to all the soul searching questions that loom in a human's mind. But is all this new expression beneficial?

I would say no.

The Problem with the Postmodern is that in all our creativity and self-expression, we have forgotten that "no" is a very real word. Some parents lacked the ability to tell us no, so now that we are in college and looking for jobs the weigh of "no" is crushing. What do you mean I can't have a while before my loan starts accruing interest? What do you mean I can't afford that [insert expensive thing here]? Many things in the world have been handed to us.

We have also forgotten that in life there are lots of absolutes that we can't ignore. It's a very real fact that if I overspend and can't pay my rent, I will be kicked out of my apartment. It is an absolute that I am a 5'4" girl and there's nothing I can do about it (even if being taller would be kind of nice sometimes). While the Postmodern age is reaching for an "anything goes" mindset, this isn't possible. There are some things that are absolute, no matter how you feel about them.

To illustrate the problem, let me try to clarify with some exaggeration. Let's say I have the belief that coffee is gross. In the Postmodern era, I am entirely entitled to my belief. And my belief, for me, is correct. But, my best friend Pam loves coffee and thinks it's the best drink one can have. And for her this is also true. But can we both be right? I am aware that coffee is a silly topic, but think about other deeper disagreements you've had.

Arguably, with broader topics we cannot allow both sides to be considered right. There are certain things in which there has to be some kind of absolute truth. Because if there is no right and wrong how do we justify laws or how do we make court decisions? How do we then decide what behaviors are good and what is bad?

And then if we are each going on our own definition of what is good, won't there be all kinds of disputes between us? Disputes that can never be settled because there is no answer?

So kiss goodbye the "anything goes" mindset. Wave to it as it fades into the background of our existence. This mindset really cannot exist. In order for peaceful coexistence, we all need absolutes to settle issues and quarrels. We need rules and laws that are binding. As humans, we need answers. The individual believe whatever you want isn't satisfying. In fact, it leaves us more confused than we started.

Self-expression and creativity can be great, but there comes a point when you're belief cannot possibly be true. Let's be the generation that takes back the truth.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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