“Behind” and “beneath” all the seemingly happy glitz and glitter of Late Modernity lies something quite sinister that will bring all the vain triumphalism of the “end of history” to naught. In fact, I would say that the “end of history” was even a piece of collective self-deception in that regard – a diversion, and perhaps even a cowardly one — and of a piece with the more general Zeitgeist of delusion and denialism. There is, in Fukuyama’s celebrated End of History and the Last Man, even the occasional slip-up that suggests Fukuyama knew at some level that his thesis of the final triumph of the Modern Era and of liberal democracy was counter-factual, little more than a “noble lie” to serve the ideological and power agenda of his confrères in the neo-conservative movement, who later congealed in The Project for the New American Century (PNAC).
All talk about “Late Modernity” or “Post-Modernity” must begin with Nietzsche. All this blather about “cultural Marxism” being the Zeitgeist is so utterly delusional that I have to consider it a sign of a mass psychosis. We are not in or entering a Marxian phase. We are in a Nietzschean phase. Hegel and Marx were both checkmated by the World Wars, and it is Nietzsche’s “two centuries of nihilism” that is currently the dominant tendency.
So, we need to grapple with Nietzsche and the meaning of Nietzsche’s “nihilism” if we are to understand the condition of the consciousness of Late Modern Man as I raised it in the last post.