Course Title: Introduction to Recent Philosophy: Modernism/Postmodernism

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Introduction to Recent Philosophy: Modernism/Postmodernism

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


335H Applied Communication


Sem 1 2006


City Campus


335H Applied Communication


Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009


City Campus


345H Media and Communication


Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014

Course Coordinator: Dr. Robert Miller

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3037

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

In this course, you will explore the philosophical basis of modernism and postmodernism, through the examination of key philosophers and their arguments. Modernist philosophy argues that the truth can be discovered objectively by reasoned inquiry. Postmodernists, on the other hand doubt this, arguing that truth is relative: beliefs about reality, or morality, for example, vary from one cultural language to another. Some say this leads to nihilism – questioning everything – and is dangerous. Others reply that it generates a tolerant and creative approach to life, making philosophy more like art or literature. You will engage in these debates and develop your own perspectives on them.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe what modernism is, what postmodernism is, what nihilism is.
  • Analyse and discuss how these philosophical movements have arisen, and how they relate to one another.
  • Critically assess the value of modernism and postmodernism, and relate this to your own discipline.

This is an elective, which will complement the capabilities you are developing in your program.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be actively engaged in a range of learning activities which may include project work, lectures, tutorials, class discussion, individual and group activities.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.

A list of recommended learning resources will be provided by your lecturer, including books, journal articles and web resources. You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.

The Library provides guides on academic referencing: and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian.


Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes. Assessment may include written and oral reports, reflective papers, creative projects and presentations, individually and in groups.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions which are available for review online: