Edward Said on Orienatlism & the Myth of the Clash of Civilisations

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Edward Said (1935 – 2003) was a  professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University.  Said, was one of the most important intellectuals of the twentieth century.  A Palestinian American, Said, was a literary theorist, and a public intellectual who was a founding figure of the critical-theory field of Post-colonialism. Said was also active in the Palestinian struggle for political and human rights.

Said’s most famous work was Orientalism (1978), which examined the way the West “othered” non-Western cultures and peoples.  In particular, Said explained that “orientalism” describes the “subtle and persistent Eurocentric prejudice against Arabo-Islamic peoples and their culture”.   In the following video presentation made on the 20th anniversary of the publication of Orientalism, Said explains how Orientalism works and how it relates to the modern day representation of the Middle East both politically and culturally.

In the second presentation from 1996, Said critiques in detail Samuel Huntington’s “Clash of Civilisations”

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Edward Said and Orientalism (1998)

 

Edward Said and the Myth of the Clash of Civilisations (1996)

 

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