Sibielski examines the history, identity, and failure of rationality as an ordering principle in Memento. Nolan's film illustrates the postmodern rejection of the founding principles of Enlightenment modernity, using narrative, visual and thematic elements to convey the increasingly blurred line between reality and hyperreality. The author argues that postmodern theory is both informed by and interested in popular culture, and this intersection has caused the debate over the nature of postmodernism to spill from academia into the popular culture realm. Memento, Sibielski suggests, is one of the cultural artifacts resulting from this dynamic, echoing the work of several postmodern theorists such as Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, Fredric Jameson, and Kevin Robins. Sibielski argues that the postmodern condition is characterized by a lost sense of history due to the perpetual reproduction of records, such as photographs and video footage, which has left society condemned to seek history through its own pop culture images and simulacra of that history. Memento's thematic symbolism reflects this confused quest for factual history, elevating rationality into the most reliable ordering principle through the actions of the protagonist, Leonard Shelby. Leonard's condition makes his existence a series of perpetual presents, self-contained in the immediate moment and detached from the events that precede them. To remedy this, he constructs a system of photographs and notes, which become his network of mediation that he relies on to transform his experience into a coherent and truthful one. Sibielski argues that the use of photographs reflects Enlightenment modernity's unconditional faith in the objectivity of scientific investigation and empirical research. Yet Memento turns this relationship into an inevitable paradox by introducing the ultimate failure of rationality as Leonard's Polaroids become the subject of shifting and subjective interpretations. This places Memento at the epicenter of the contemporary obsession with ordering and controlling the world, using knowledge as a means to the end of self-actualization, and unfolding the larger discourse of humanism and rationalism as they relate to the notion of objective knowledge.