A movement encompassing art, philosophy, linguistics, and science, postmodernism is marked by fundamental skepticism about truth and distrust of the political implications of language and action. Postmodernism may be considered a philosophy or the mood or condition of an era. Alternatively, postmodernism might be seen as a logical (perhaps inevitable) development in human understanding that began with ancient Greek, Chinese, and Muslim attempts to demystify the natural world and progressed toward a reaction to 18th-century Enlightenment and modern insistence on empiricism for economic, physical, and social engineering. Postmodernists observed that in the effort to order, control, and improve human life through religion, science, and government, some people prospered and some suffered—that some always suffer, that matters cannot be arranged to ensure the good of all, ...

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