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Edward Wadie Said was born on 1 November 1935. He was a businessman in Jerusalem, then part of British-governed Mandatory Palestine (1920–48). He was a professor of literature at Columbia University, a public intellectual, and a founder of the academic field of postcolonial studies. A Palestinian American born in Mandatory Palestine, he was a citizen of the United States by way of his father, a U.S. Army veteran. In this highly-acclaimed work, Edward Said surveys the history and nature of Western attitudes towards the East, considering orientalism as a powerful European ideological creation – a way for writers, philosophers and colonial administrators to deal with the ‘otherness’ of eastern culture, customs and beliefs. He traces this view through the writings of Homer, Nerval and Flaubert, Disraeli and Kipling, whose imaginative depictions have greatly contributed to the West’s romantic and exotic picture of the Orient. Drawing on his own experiences as an Arab Palestinian living in the West, Said examines how these ideas can be a reflection of European imperialism and racism.
Here are some text extracts from Orientalism PDF:
Orientalism review :
An amazing classic book from the late Edward Saïd about the origins of the Western view of the Orient that shaped literature and music in the 17th-20th century. It is a penetrating view of various racial stereotypes of Arab peoples (dressed in sheets smoking hookahs and generally under-educated and prone to laziness and violence) that pervades all levels of society and served the interests of colonialism to appease consciences of all the violence and subjugation that occurred in China, India the Middle East and Northern Africa. Particularly in these troubled times with racial slurs against Muslims becoming common currency (amd electoral policy), it remains relevant and eye-opening. Highly recommended along with its sequel, Culture and Imperialism. Michael Finocchiaro. Michael Finocchiaro.
Quotes from ORIENTALISM:
“The Orient and Islam have a kind of extrareal, phenomenologically reduced status that puts them out of reach of everyone except the Western expert. From the beginning of Western speculation about the Orient, the one thing th orient could not do was to represent itself. Evidence of the Orient was credible only after it had passed through and been made firm by the refining fire of the Orientalist’s work.”
“Every single empire in its official discourse has said that it is not like all the others, that its circumstances are special, that it has a mission to enlighten, civilize, bring order and democracy, and that it uses force only as a last resort. And, sadder still, there always is a chorus of willing intellectuals to say calming words about benign or altruistic empires, as if one shouldn’t trust the evidence of one’s eyes watching the destruction and the misery and death brought by the latest mission civilizatrice.”
Orientalism by Edward W. Said PDF
- Book Title: Orientalism
- Author: Edward W. Said
- Category: EnglishPDF.
- Genre: History
- Collection: Orientalism by Edward W. Said
- Pages: 378 Pages
- Size: 4.0 Mo
- Edition: Pantheon Books
- ISBN: 0-394-74067-X
by Edward W. Said.