What does postmodernism mean? And why is the debate around it central to understanding life today? This authoritative and revealing book provides the first sociological examination of postmodernism. Written by a noted scholar in the field, it considers the differences between modernism and postmodernism, describes the historical and social context which gave rise to both, and provides a clear explanation yet available of why postmodernism is important. The book supplies readers with one of the most helpful accounts of a fascinating and puzzling concept which is essential for understanding our times.