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School of Politics and International Relations

Theory Lab Reading Group: Re-reading Orientalism 5

15 December 2016

Time: 4:30 - 6:00pm
Venue: QMUL, Arts One, Room 2.18

Every Thursday from November 17th to December 15th 2016

It seems pertinent to re-read Edward Said’s Orientalism in 2016. On one hand, recent events in the Middle East brought the agency of the ‘orient’ back to the center of academic debate. On the other, recent developments in Europe, most recent of which is Brexit, highlighted the ubiquity of exclusionary discourses in former imperialist states. This all occurs while the Israeli occupation of Palestine, Said’s birthplace, remains a reminder that the age of imperialism is yet to be gone. Rereading Orientalism in (and through) such historical context would highly reward our understanding of both Said’s seminal post-colonial text and our contemporary post-colonial history.

In the first meeting we will watch Edward Said’s Last Interview to briefly introduce ourselves to the legacy of the author and the main issues he covers in Orientalism. In the following five meetings we will discuss the book’s three chapters, covering almost half a chapter (30-40 pages) each time. The last meeting will cover Orientalism’s conclusions and main arguments, hopefully in the presence of a post-colonial specialist.

Each time, the discussion will be opened by a volunteer member of the group. Please bring the text to the meetings.

The Reading Group is free to attend – however, please contact the Reading Group’s coordinator, Hesham Shafick Abdelbary - – to confirm your attendance or have any other enquiries prior to the start of the group on the 17th November 2016.

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