The Challenge of our Age

In 2009 Mary Gordon was New York’s official state author.  And she understands, at least partly, postmodernism.  And she is hardly an advocate or supporter of Christianity.  I guess if ignoring the “challenge” of our age is to ignore the insights of postmodernism, then we have many still advocating ignorance.

Whereas I greatly admire Jefferson and the Enlightenment figures for their courage in blasting through so much that was oppressive and corrosive and damaging, there are times when their blind spots are so evident. I don’t want to be flippantly rejecting of the Enlightenment, but I am post-Enlightenment in that I am a postmodernist. Postmodernism gets a bad rap, but what it tells us is that all we see depends on where we’re standing, which is only one place among many. That is the liberation and the grief of postmodernism—you have to always know that you’re not seeing something of possibly enormous importance. To ignore that challenge is to ignore the challenge of our age.

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