Postmodernism is an abstraction. There are only postmodern theorists; and if we look at the major postmodern theorists we find a definite, non-nihilistic ethical dimension to their work. The following extract, backed up by references. provides ample evidence :
One of the most persistent, and loudest, complaints raised against
postmodernism concerns its allegedly enervating moral stance. According to
critics, the postmodern critique, by deconstructing all foundational claims to
knowledge and truth, leads to one of two extremely unpleasant ethical
alternatives. Either it undermines any possibility of moral judgment, leaving
only debilitating nihilism in its wake, or, what amounts to the same thing, it
abandons the search for moral standards altogether in favor of a kind of
infantile libertarianism where “anything goes.” Anyone who cared (or dared) to
examine the literature more closely would, of course,
find this accusation to be a gross oversimplification. With the arguable
exception of Baudrillard, whose “fatal strategies” betray a distinctly
premodern longing for the pastoral simplicities of earlier times, all of the
major figures whose names are associated with the postmodern movement (Lyotard,
Foucault, Derrida) have produced a considerable body of work addressed to moral
or ethical considerations. Lyotard has focused almost exclusively on ethics, or
ethically related topics such as politics and justice, in just about everything
he has written since The Postmodern Condition (see especially Lyotard and
Thebaud 1985; Lyotard 1 988a, 1 988b, 1990). In a similar fashion, toward the
end of his life Foucault increasingly devoted his attention to the ways in
which individuals are constituted as moral selves (see Foucault 1986, 1988).
Finally, a major theme in Derrida’s recent work concerns the ethical
significance of differance in the encounter with others (see Derrida 1984,
1988a 1988b). However one evaluates the results of these inquiries (and I
surely have my own reservations), the charge that the postmodern critique is
necessarily morally bankrupt is uninformed. Many of those advancing such
blanket condemnations seem more concerned with bewailing the reckless slaughter
of their own,sacred moral cows at the hands of the irreverent French than with
examining the complexities of the postmodern critique. ( David R. Dickens,
'The Ethical Horizons of Postmodernity', Symbolic Interaction, Vol. 18, No. 4,
Ethnographically Yours (Winter 1995), pp.535-6.)
Derrida, Jacques. 1988a. “The Politics of Friendship.” Journal of Philosophy 85(4): 632-644.
Derrida, Jacques. 1988b. “Afterword: Toward An Ethic of Discussion.” Pp. 111-160 in 'Limited, lnc.', Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.
Derrida, Jacques. 1984. “Deconstruction and the Other.” Pp. 107-1 26 in Dialogues with Contemporary Continental Thinkers. Manchester, UK: Manchester University Press.
Foucault, Michel. 1986. The Care of the Self. New York: Pantheon.
Foucault, Michel. 1988. Politics, Philosophy, Culture, edited by Lawrence Kritzman. New York : Routledge.
Lyotard, Jean-Francois. 1988a. 'The Differend: Phrases in Dispute.' Minneapolis: University
Lyotard, Jean-Francois. 1 988b Peregrinations: Law, Form, Event. New York: Columbia.
Lyotard, Jean-Francois. 1990. Heidegger and “the Jews” '. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Lyotard, Jean-Francois, and Jean Thebaud. 1985 'Just Gaming'. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Pre, backed up by references,ss.