Introduction "What is Post-Modernism?" There seems to be this wide phenomenon of post-modernity spreading throughout organisations and as much as it maybe accepted or rejected by managers, it cannot, to a certain extent be ignored. Post-modernism is hard to define, because it is a concept that appears in a wide variety of disciplines or areas of study, including art, architecture, music, film, literature, sociology, communications, fashion and technology. It's hard to locate it temporally or historically, because its not clear exactly when post-modernism began; however it is known that it emerged as an area of academic study in the 1970 s/1980 s. According to Frederic Jameson, modernism and post-modernism are cultural formations, which accompany particular stages of Capitalism. Jameson outlines three primary phases of capitalism, which dictate particular cultural practices. The first is market capitalism and the second, monopoly capitalism.
The third phase, which we are in now, is multinational or consumer capitalism (with the emphasis paced on marketing, selling and consuming commodities, not on producing them). Modernity refers to a set of philosophical, political and ethical ideas, which provide the basis for the aesthetic aspect of modernism. "Modernity" is older than "Modernism;" the label 'modern', first articulated in nineteenth-century sociology, was meant to distinguish the present era from the previous one, which was labelled " antiquity." In this context, modernity is popularly regarded as a product of the enlightenment and represents its use of scientific logic and objective rationality. Before the development of modernism, pre-modern times were dominated by theological or religious explanations. Modernity is fundamentally about order: about rationality and rationalisation, creating order out of chaos. The assumption is that creating more rationality is conducive to creating more order, and that the more ordered a society is, the better it will function (the more rationally it will function).
Because modernity is about the pursuit of ever-increasing levels of order, modern societies constantly are on guard against everything labelled as "disorder," which might disrupt order. The way that modern societies go about creating categories labelled as 'order' or 'disorder' have to do with the effort of stability. Francois Leotard equates that stability with the idea of "totality," or a total ised system are maintained in modern societies through the means of grand narratives or master narratives, which are stories a culture tells itself about its practices and beliefs. Theorists such as Frederick Taylor advocated the application of 'scientific' principles to job design and work management. It was founded on the belief that if jobs were designed to achieve maximum productivity, and if workers were selected with the necessary physical, as opposed to cerebral, capabilities, then wages could be increased: this Taylor argued, would provide the necessary incentive for workers. Although productivity did increase significantly as a result of carefully, albeit mechanically, planned tasks and careful worker selection, considerable disenchantment and de motivation often resulted, because of the physically highly demanding and repetitive nature of the resultant jobs..