A Difficult Structure


I can't understand the following phrase, would you please help me?

"The meta-narratives of German Idealism come sharply under scrutiny in postmodernism, for these overarching systems of meaning have, in the postmodern view, only left their hopefuls sadly disappointed."

Analytic vs. Continental Philosophy, by Kile Jones
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    I'm not surprised. Does anyone understand this stuff?

    But the structure is this:

    "The meta-narratives of German Idealism are sharply criticised by postmodernism. The reason is, in the postmodern view, that these overarching systems of meaning (i.e. meta-narratives) have done one thing only: they have sadly disappointed those who hoped in them."


    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    What part of the sentence is your question about? If you have several questions about different parts of it, please ask each question in a separate thread so that posts on different topics aren't mixed with each other. Even if you're interested in all of them, other people who need answers about one of these words later probably won't be.

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    There are a lot of concepts in there, presumably you understand them, and the structure is what defeats you?

    Breaking it down into is constituen parts, and paraphrasing a little we have:

    Post-modernism has scrutinised German Idealism in particular the meta-narratives
    German Idealism believes in a notion of "overarching systems of meaning" (these believers are metaphorically classed in this text as "hopefuls" )
    The post-modern view is that these beliefs were wrong and that the believers are disappointed.

    As an outsider I read this and wonder if believers (e.g. Germans Idealists) are ever disappointed when someone else (e.g. post modernists) do not believe in their theories (e.g. meta-narratives and over-arching systems of meaning).

    Does this help or do you need more?


    Senior Member
    English - England
    = All the themes in the stories concerning German Idealism are examined critically in postmodernism because the common themes within them have, according to post-modernism, left those who believed in them, disappointed
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