Difference Between Poststructuralism and Postmodernism

The Self in Relation to the World

The difference between postmodernism and poststructuralism can be seen in how the two schools of thought view the self in relation to the world. In postmodernism, the concept of self is abandoned. The individual becomes fragmented in a crowded, noisy world of endless data and competing ideas. The postmodern individual lets go of selfhood and engages in “play,” or the enjoyment of aesthetic experience itself to combat boredom. In poststructuralism, the critical self becomes more integrated with the world by accepting inherent contradictions in society -- that is, by resisting ideology and only one mode of identity. This poststructuralist self never escapes the structures of society but rather encompasses all possibilities in a new awareness of diversity and interconnectedness.

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About the Author

Scott Neuffer is an award-winning journalist and writer who lives in Nevada. He holds a bachelor's degree in English and spent five years as an education and business reporter for Sierra Nevada Media Group. His first collection of short stories, "Scars of the New Order," was published in 2014.