The volume begins with a major statement by the French feminist culture critic Julia Kristeva and includes essays by well-known and also younger continental philosophers writing in the North American context and reassessing the European heritage, its limits and effective futures.
The future of postmodernism is assessed in terms of key themes: from the language of desire, the limits of representation, and the revaluation of values, to the feminist rewriting of patriarchy and the critical archeology of deconstruction. Eighteen essays review the postmodernist difference inscribed in modern philosophy. Traditional concerns and preoccupations—the subject, the will, the body, language, representation, and metaphysics—are placed in question through re-readings of rationalist, dialectical, psychoanalytic, aesthetic, and patriarchical values incorporated into modernist thinking. The figures of Nietzsche, Freud, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Foucault, and Derrida are treated in their multiple facets, and in relation to their importance for postmodernism within the continental philosophical framework.