What Is Orientalism?

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What Is Orientalism?

Said made a clear analogy between orientalism and colonialism. They are both set

with the same binary opposition.

white/ non white

occidental/ non occidental

In a very detailed and structured study of the orient (behavior, habit,

tradition ...) we document a large amount of fact and data. All compile in a

general study they produce the illusion of a well understood and objectively

constructed knowledge.

These are, in fact, mere observations and purely subjective entities (seen only

with the western eyes) which do not explain nor reflect the true nature of the


We then generalize from theses singles observations, set up categories and

labels. We are now able to answer questions very simply creating this illusion

of knowledge.

We witness the realization of cliches; single sided beliefs

that fuels themselves upon their own ignorance.

SAID then explains how this technique empowers his creator. The rigorous

discourse, the elaboration of thought and ideas, subjectively authenticated

itself. The content is no longer address and leaves the victim of the discourse

reduced to plain and pure denial. The content has become a set of prejudicial

belief (cliches).

To remind you of the famous aphorism: "the pen is mightier than the sword"

He writes:

"Orientalism is fundamentally a political doctrine willed over the orient

because the orient was weaker than the west."

Though injustice has already been served and the...
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