illusory past, either distant or recent. There, in the mists of time, the proponents of these social movements search for answers and remedies to the perceived ills of their present. These contemporary deficiencies and faults are presented as the inevitable outcomes of decadent modernity. By using a romanticized past cast as ideal, perfect, and unblemished to heal a dystopian and corrupt present, these thinkers, artists, and activists seek to bring about a utopian and revitalized future.
Other reactionary ideas of progress are romantic and merely abandon the tenets and axioms of the prevailing centralized culture in favor of a more or less anarchic mélange of unstructured, post-structural, or deconstructed ideas and interactions, relying on some emergent but ever-fluid underlying social “order” as an organizing principle.
Recent Reactionary Ideas of Progress – Post-modernity
Jean-François Lyotard and Jean Baudrillard (and, to some extent, Michel Foucault) posited post-modernity as both the culmination and the negation of modernity. While modernity encouraged linear change in an asymptotic