Deconstruct This!

An homage to the ineffable Bigas Luna

Yeah, you heard my bark: deconstruct this!

I've spent a few months of my dog life (decades for you) thinking about the mythical battle between the search for meaning and its archenemy, postmodernism. As any philosopher worth his salt, I have tried first to understand the latter, condensing all that dribble into an intelligible paragraph. But to no avail. Until now. Because I happily stumbled upon a piece by Camille Paglia which summarized postmodernism quite elegantly and succinctly:

The postmodernist slide away from the search for factual truth undermines the entire raison d'être of universities and the professors who ought to serve them. It is cringe-making that students are being fed this postmodernist gruel: History is a narrative; every narrative is a fiction; objectivity is impossible, so who cares what's real and what's not?

That, inevitably, leads her to conclude what at least those of us outside the Olympus of Gender Studies circle jerking (a.k.a. Judith Butler wannabes) already know: that the cult of Foucault is overtly fascist in its kinky worship of social constructionism, practically crippling itself as a semi-respectable discipline by completely ignoring well grounded inquiry paths such as biology, theology, psychology, semiotics and history; eternally obsessing over the modern bourgeois habitat while acknowledging power solely as emanating from society.

Do you want a proof that postmodernism and poststructuralism are inelegant humbug with a thin coat of advanced thought painting at best? Let me tell you a bit more about the Sokal hoax. So, back in the 90s, this trollish and imaginative physics professor submitted an absolute piece of trash to an academic journal of postmodern cultural studies, one with an editorial board peppered by the movement's sacred cows. And I am not exaggerating when I say that the submitted paper was actual garbage. Think about the infinite monkey theorem. Basically, Sokal rammed bombastic nonsense next to the stupidest science quotes by postmodernist academics, made it sound good, and sweetened the ears of the editors with terms taken from their own "holy texts". Can you guess what happened? They. Fucking. Published. It. They did. Among many other things, this experiment demonstrated that, at the time and still today, postmodern philosophy is like astrology. Or even worse: neoclassical economics.

Oh, you think that the Sokal Affair was an isolated case? Follow @RealPeerReview on Twitter and, as an appetizer, indulge your schadenfreude with this delicious snack:

Grand! Isn't it? Well, this is the type of shit that continues to be published in journals throughout the world, fueling the blossoming careers of countless gender studies program directors, equality officers, and other sort of parasites. Even worse, this mumbo jumbo informs policy all around the world, shaping the actions and words of countless politicians nonetheless the douche king of them all, Justin Trudeau. The secret of these philistines is, besides the fact that they move in mafioso packs and protect each other while trenched in their cubicles of academic and bureaucratic power, that they have developed their own unintelligible lingo into a grandiose tower of verbiage which, as Sokal demonstrated, sounds quite cool but, when you scratch the surface, means absolutely nothing. Do you want me show you where's the twist? Let's compare medieval hermeneutics, the simplest and most logical of all, with Derrida's deconstructionism, the favorite tool of these intellectual orcs.

So, you see? Back in the Middle Ages, when the world was submerged into a mantle of obscurantism and terribleness, peasants and the odd uncooperative saracen may have been treated like trash but, lo and behold, readers were treated like thinking beings. The left column was a standard introduction in all editions of classical authors and, basically, gave the reader very firm information for him to make his own mind. You know, the way adults treat other adults. However, after the fall of moral absolutism, and since science responds how instead of why, a void emerged and the most audacious charlatans started to creep in. Bereft of any moral reference point and overtaken by the most teenage nihilism you can imagine, the aforementioned snake oil peddlers basically concluded that it was existence was a sham and since they couldn't find any meaning in their lives then surely there wasn't any meaning at all. Also, they must have been very, very upset about the Judeo-Christian morality of the West creating the conditions for the Enlightenment and, henceforth, to produce the comfort and liberties they enjoy nowadays, because they have a hard-on for bashing the West and all it has traditionally stood for. They also like to murder science and, if you don't believe it, just browse any gender studies journal you wish.

The hardest place to be is in the middle of this intellectual orgy. On one side, you have the fedora-wearing Dawkins fans whose cognitive dissonance allows them to assert that there is nothing out of the objective, measurable world while at the same time making random value judgements. And, on the other side, you have the Derrida drones rejecting all sense of life meaning and screeching at any mention of morality, despite the embedded biological traits which mirror very profound and persistent moral compasses throughout the blossoming of humanity as self-conscious species. There is a tyrannical duopoly of echo chambers, one overflowing with moral negationism and the other festering with moral relativism, and few have noticed that this is all bullshit. There is nature and there is culture, and their interplay gives rise to a world as-we-experience-it and, mind you, is both enabling and coercive, destructive and giving, symbolic and out in the open. There is a realm of questions which science cannot (yet?) answer and no, not everything is socially fucking constructed. Sadly, there's no club for those who refuse to be the cool kids' bitch.

In an existential landscape, deconstructionism is a self-defeating, illogical method which infantilizes the Other while negating the complexity of Being. And, although apparently nihilistic, is ferociously militant in its drive to bring everything down with it. Therefore, if you have fallen victim of the postmodernist cult, please be so kind to come and deconstruct this.