Hyperculture

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Supermodernity-maggie-nichols.jpg

Definition

Supermodernity is a term used to describe an accelerated form of modernity that accelerates the transformation of time and space. Modernity is defined as that which integrates the new and the old such that both become familiar in the same space. Supermodernity, in contrast, is characterized by its excesses. There are three such excesses in supermodernity. In contrast to accounts of postmodernity in which there is a general collapse of an idea of progress, in supermodernity there is an acceleration of history that results, not in meaninglessness, but in the excess of meaningful events. This excess of historical significance, rather than leaving us complacent, makes us even more avid for meaning.

Supermodernity is the essence of a totally syncretic universe, where everything blends together. All religions, arts, cultures, scientific techniques, all business commerce and trade. The ultimate melting pot of thought, image, and existence. This is the natural outcome of living in a society that is becoming more commodified, with less friction dividing it. Now all one does is pick up the pieces and put them together in new ways. Everything has new value now. Everything may be used to make something. Evidence of this is the remix culture of YouTube videos, the musician GirlTalk, and the re-commodification of history and historical objects by hipster culture. In a supermodern era, all of history is in the cultural domain. All of culture is capable of being processed, wound down, and remixed.