When you go on a date you picture worlds colliding, fireworks, and other western depictions of romance. My date included all of these elements, but not in the clichéd way you are probably picturing. Worlds collided all right; my postmodern world collided into his modern one. The fireworks that ensued were cataclysmic. It began with dinner, and it ended with shock and awe.
He made reservations and endless compliments. It seemed that things would go well despite the decade age difference between us. I was 22, and he was 32. We pulled up at Antonio’s, my favorite Italian restaurant, and my stomach fluttered with both hunger and excitement. Dinner was lovely, and proceeded along in Disneyesque fashion.
After dinner, we went to his place to watch a movie. It wasn’t long before I geared the conversation toward religion and politics because it’s in my nature to defy norms of behavior. “You don’t understand we are there because they hate us they want to kill us.” he said. My jaw dropped; did he really just say that? “It’s their religion. All Muslims are extremists.” he said. I began to feel rage, and I started to argue. How could someone believe that you could lump a whole ethnicity, culture, or religion into one group? People are complex; people aren’t machines that can be predicted. I was not offended as much by his comment as I was offended by his lack of possibilities. His limited world view was geared by a single perspective leaving no room for fluidity. I thought he was a bigot, but now I see that we are from two different worlds. By that I mean we have two different world views; I’m postmodern and he is modern.
My identity has influences from all three genres, but the current stage of my life is predominantly influenced by postmodernism which impacts my single and dating identity. I have some lingering romanticist views that still influence my dating identity, and were carried over from childhood. I am currently educated within a modern system that has situated me within a grand narrative impacting my dating expectations. Yet, I have shifted my identity increasingly toward a postmodern perspective that cause conflict in my dating relationships because I struggle with fixed perspectives. My personal identity transition mirrors society’s transition through the three genres of self. My dating identity is pastiche pulling from all three perspectives of self, but this fluidity makes dominantly postmodern.
Like many young girls I was brought up with the pervasive message of Disney, and this has left me marked with lingering romanticist views. As a child I attributed all things to a deep inner passion. Thus is what Gergen terms the deep interior which is largely viewed as the soul or the luminous hollow in secular terms. My concept of self was that people were born a certain way with certain inner gifts. Beauty and genius were not created or observable. Some people were just born with an intrinsic way of being that could not be broken down....