Explaining Postmodernism

Explaining Postmodernism:
Skepticism and Socialism from Rousseau to Foucault

By Stephen R. C. Hicks
Professor of Philosophy

English editions:

First edition: two hardcover and eight softcover printings from 2004-2010 by Scholargy Publishing.
First edition Kindle e-book published 2010.
Expanded hardcover edition published in 2011 by Ockham’s Razor.
Kindle expanded edition published in 2011.
Audiobook edition published April 2013: MP3 and YouTube links below.


Portuguese translation by Silvana Vieira published by Callis Editora (São Paulo, Brazil, 2011). Also in e-book editions at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and iTunes.
Serbian translation of Chapter One by Alma Causevic (2012).
Persian translation by H.P. Safir, Khatereh Zohrabi, and Farzaneh Ehsani published by Qoqnoos Publishing (Tehran, Iran, 2013). [Sample pages.] [Also this second translation into Farsi.]
Swedish translation published by Timbro (Stockholm, Sweden, 2014).
Spanish translation published by Barbarroja Ediciones (Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2015).
Polish translation by Piotr Kostyło and Katarzyna Nowak published by University of Kasimir the Great Press (Bydgoszcz, Poland, 2016).
Arabic translation forthcoming in 2018.

The First Edition text:

Hicks-EP-Full [pdf].

The Chapters and Sections:

Frontmatter [pdf]
Table of Contents [pdf]
Chapter One: What Postmodernism Is [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Chapter Two: The Counter-Enlightenment Attack on Reason [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Chapter Three: The Twentieth-Century Collapse of Reason [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Chapter Four: The Climate of Collectivism [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Chapter Five: The Crisis of Socialism [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Chapter Six: Postmodern Strategy [pdf] [mp3] [YouTube]
Bibliography [pdf] [html]
Index [pdf]
Acknowledgments [pdf]

The Tables and Charts:

Chart 1.1: Defining Pre-modernism and Modernism
Chart 1.2: The Enlightenment Vision [pdf]
Chart 1.3: Defining Pre-modernism, Modernism, and Postmodernism
Chart 5.1: Marxism on the Logic of Capitalism
Chart 5.2: Total Livestock in the Soviet Union
Chart 5.3: Gross Physical Output for Selected Food Items
Chart 5.4: Deaths from Democide Compared to Deaths from International War, 1900-1987
Chart 5.5: Left Terrorist Groups’ Founding Dates
Chart 5.6:
The Evolution of Socialist Strategies [gif]

Detailed Table of Contents.

The Scholarly Reviews:

Professor Curtis Hancock in The Review of Metaphysics (and can be read online here).
Professor Gary Jason in Liberty [also online here.]
Professor Marcus Verhaegh in The Independent Review.
Dr. David Gordon in The Mises Review.
Professor Max Hocutt in The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies.
Professor Edvard Lorkovic in Philosophy in Review.
Professor Steven M. Sanders in Reason Papers.
Professor Mistaken (pseudonym) in Uncouth Opinions.

Return to the StephenHicks.org main page.


107 thoughts on “Explaining Postmodernism

  • November 1, 2017 at 5:57 pm

    I have searched everywhere for your book. There aren’t any available for sale for an affordable fee. How may I acquire the latest printing?

  • November 1, 2017 at 11:36 pm

    Hi Patrice: The new printing should be in stock at Amazon within a week. Thanks for your interest.

  • November 5, 2017 at 7:41 pm

    The new printing should be available any time now, and that will bring prices down to their normal range. Thanks for your interest.

  • December 31, 2017 at 12:59 am

    Dear Dr Hicks,

    Is there an article about how new atheism (Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens) embodies the methods of traditional skepticism, which will I always lead to Socialism?

    I can see the Links, but I cannot explain it.


  • December 31, 2017 at 6:33 am

    Hi Henry: I don’t know of an article that focuses on that, unfortunately. My sense is that atheism all by itself does not lead to any particular politics, as atheism is only the lack of a belief in gods. One can be a skeptic about religion without being a skeptic about other things, e.g., chemistry or economics. Also, even if one is a deep skeptic about everything in general, socialism is not the only politics one could then be non-rationally committed to. Hope that’s responsive to the intent of your question. Best, Stephen

  • January 13, 2018 at 8:03 pm

    Professor Hicks,
    Why has post modernism had so little impact on the physical sciences, but has virtual destroyed world history, political philosophy and several other humanities? Why did the humanities collapse so readily and physics laughed them off (per Alan Sokal)?

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