The "postmodern perspective" is a result of a series of historical events and technological changes that reshaped the way in which we understand ourselves and our surroundings. The reality in which we live these days, where the contact with completely opposite ways of living life is a common phenomenon, where the contact with other cultures is at the distance of the television set or the computer, where pluralism gains terrain in places where it was unthinkable years ago, but also where the idea of rational progress lead to Auschwitz and where the eagerness of imposition of the western ideals showed its limits on 9/11 is a reality in which the metaphysical ideal of a superior order, stable and hidden beyond the sensible, is untenable.
The present world manifests like never before in the history of mankind its interpretative tissue. The proliferation of evidence of different forms of life and “world-views” dissolved the philosophical project of the West, whose ultimate goal -from the Greeks to the moderns- was to find the truth hidden behind our representations. The internet has propelled this phenomenon and the exploding variety of tastes, beliefs, sexual inclinations, opinions or political tendencies is documented daily by millions through blogs, homepages or video cameras that broadcast the diversity live and for everybody. The historical character of human beings and their culture has never been exposed as it is today and the evidence is there instantly accessible. In this new world of mass media one doesn’t “find” the truth, one participates in its construction. The project of Wikipedia is paradigmatic of this idea of "constructing" the truth, of constantly adjusting what we consider to be true but most importantly of changing our attitude towards the truth: It brings about the consciousness that truth is not ultimate, unique and eternal; on the contrary it is always temporal, it’s always agreed upon and it’s always trusted to those who are considered “the experts” on every aspect of life. The truth is there, but is always susceptible to be edited, always; just click and do it, but don’t expect your version to be unmodified because truth is now open to social scrutiny.
These days we are immersed in a flow of information where sticking a pole in the ground and saying “this is what we are” with the pretension that it will stay there forever is hopeless; the current is just too strong now, no pole will hold for too long. This image is particularly useful to help us understand the rise of fundamentalism as an opposite movement to postmodernism. The current of information and multiplicity has become so strong that those who want to defend a particular conception of men or a particular way of living have two choices: to come up with stronger and stronger poles and try to resist the flow or gain consciousness of their interpretative character and then opening it up to social scrutiny. The fundamentalist is the one that takes the first road. In this sense, fundamentalism is a reaction grounded on some kind of nostalgia about the own interpretation of the world that feels threatened by the current multiplicity and speed of information. The pressure to let go is so strong that instead of accepting the interpretative character of life people react on the opposite way fortifying their own interpretation as much as they can. I want to emphasize then that the rise of fundamentalism nowadays is not surprising since not everyone is ready to let what they perceive as blind social forces decide on how they should live. I won’t deny that the price of postmodernism can be too high for some people, but can you resist it? That is another story.Summing up, the postmodern perspective is not a philosophical concept whose understanding is reserved for the academia; it’s rather an attitude that encapsulates the way in which we understand ourselves at this point in history. The contemporary reality broke the docks of metaphysics and moralizing religion and brought about the age of interpretation. The postmodern man is one that has acquired consciousness that his own existence is an interpretation and that trying to fix it as “the true interpretation” is nothing more than an exercise of conceptual violence doomed to fail. The postmodern man woke up from the dream of the true and unique interpretation, but just to resume dreaming again, only that this time he is conscious that he is dreaming.