Basking Lotion
Jihadist Humour

Academic Waste Products

Further to this, here’s a little more from Keith Windschuttle’s lecture, History, Truth and Tribalism:

“One reason I chose to cite this passage from Bhabha* was because… it contains terminology such as ‘synchronic’ and ‘diachronic’, which no self-respecting, theoretically correct postmodernist would use today. For these are terms that derive from the now out-of-date theory of structuralism, which has since been completely superseded by the theory of poststructuralism. One index of the achievements of academic theory today can be gauged by its waste matter; that is, the range of concepts and methods jettisoned along the way to its present position. The great majority of these concepts were adopted not because of their intellectual weight or clarity but because they were mouthed by whoever was the then prevailing theoretical guru…

No-one bothers any more with once solemnly-made distinctions within the field of semiotics between the ‘signifier’ and the ‘signified’ or between ‘denotation’ and ‘connotation’. Indeed, whatever happened to semiotics? All these concepts are now museum pieces. Yet in the 1980s, each was taught as gospel by the same people who are now recommending a postmodernist or a cultural studies approach as the definitive word on their subject. One can only feel terribly sorry for the generations of humanities students once forced to dutifully learn and regurgitate these now dead and useless concepts.”

*Homi Bhabha, former professor of English at the University of Chicago and a “leading voice in post-colonial studies.”