post·​mod·​ern ˌpōs(t)-ˈmä-dərn How to pronounce postmodern (audio)
 nonstandard  -ˈmä-d(ə-)rən
: of, relating to, or being an era after a modern one
postmodern times
a postmodern metropolis
: of, relating to, or being any of various movements in reaction to modernism that are typically characterized by a return to traditional materials and forms (as in architecture) or by ironic self-reference and absurdity (as in literature)
: of, relating to, or being a theory that involves a radical reappraisal of modern assumptions about culture, identity, history, or language
postmodern feminism
postmodernist adjective or noun
ˌpōs(t)-mə-ˈdər-ne-tē How to pronounce postmodern (audio)
 also  -ˈder-

Examples of postmodern in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But by dispensing with his postmodern pyrotechnics, Auster has produced a more grounded and consequently more believable work about a memorable life — and a life of memories. Malcolm Forbes, Los Angeles Times, 1 Nov. 2023 Rudy Perez, a minimalist choreographer who was a pioneer of postmodern dance, a movement that upended notions of what dance might look like, died on Sept. 29 at his home in Los Angeles. Penelope Green, New York Times, 14 Oct. 2023 Styled much like a postmodern shipping container, there’s more than 41 cubic feet of cargo space, even with all three rows in use. cleveland, 9 Sep. 2023 Melnick, 59, has been choreographing on the postmodern dance scene for decades, and has performed with Twyla Tharp, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Trisha Brown, Sara Rudner and others, as well as on her own. Marina Harss, New York Times, 23 Aug. 2023 Vienna, Austria Named the world’s most liveable city this year by the Economist Intelligence Unit, Vienna is where Gothic architecture meets postmodern design. Maya Kachroo-Levine, Travel + Leisure, 11 July 2023 Who would have guessed that a postmodern historical novel about the machinations of finance capital would have such a draw? Elizabeth Powers, National Review, 11 May 2023 Seated at the table in their studio kitchen before a postmodern teapot vaguely resembling a chicken, Auerbach answered T’s Artist’s Questionnaire. Julia Felsenthal, New York Times, 16 Mar. 2023 In the beginning, the return of Barbie pink was exciting, in a high-camp, postmodern, conceptual kind of way; a way that reframed a relationship to pink that had been poisoned by the marketing of gender stereotype back in the 1970s. Vanessa Friedman, New York Times, 24 July 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'postmodern.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1916, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of postmodern was in 1916

Dictionary Entries Near postmodern

Cite this Entry

“Postmodern.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2023.

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