SOAS University of London

Centre for Global Media and Communications

Post-structuralism – knowledge, history, discourse.

Professor Mark Hobart

Date: 12 December 2018Time: 5:00 PM

Finishes: 12 December 2018Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: B211

Type of Event: 0

Simplifying to the extreme, I define postmodern as incredulity towards metanarratives.
This incredulity is undoubtedly a product of progress in the sciences but that progress it
turn presupposes it. To the obsolescence of the metanarrative apparatus of legitimation
corresponds, most notably, the crisis of metaphysical philosophy and of the university
institution which in the past relied on it (Lyotard The postmodern condition xxiv).
An entire series of intellectual figures were defined as ‘structuralists’ who had conducted
completely different kinds of investigations, but having one point in common: the need to
oppose that set of philosophical elaborations, considerations, and analyses centered
essentially on the theoretical affirmation of the ‘primacy of the subject’. One went from a
kind of Marxism that agonizes over the concept of alienation, to phenomenological
existentialism centered on lived experience, to those tendencies of psychology that in the
name of experience and of making it adequate to man (sic) - let’s say the ‘experience of
the self’ - rejected the theme of the unconscious (Foucault But structuralism was not a
French invention 85-86).


Discussion theme: Is post-structuralism a genuine intellectual revolution or just

‘intellectual imposture’?

Cultural practice: Consider what it is inappropriate – or impossible – to say on what

sorts of occasion.