Orientalism

Front Cover
Penguin, 2003 - History - 396 pages
236 Reviews

For generations now, Edward W. Said's Orientalism has defined our understanding of colonialism and empire, and this Penguin Modern Classics edition contains a preface written by Said shortly before his death in 2003.

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.

Edward W. Said (1935-2003) was a Palestinian-American cultural critic and author, born in Jerusalem and educated in Egypt and the United States. His other books include The Question of Palestine, Culture and Imperialism and Out of Place: A Memoir.

If you enjoyed Orientalism, you might like Frantz Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth, also available in Penguin Modern Classics.

'Stimulating, elegant and pugnacious'
Observer

'Beautifully patterned and passionately argued'
New Statesman

'Very exciting ... his case is not merely persuasive, but conclusive'
John Leonard, New York Times

'Magisterial'
Terry Eagleton

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
108
4 stars
75
3 stars
39
2 stars
14
1 star
0

Review: Orientalism

User Review  - Vasia Doulougeri - Goodreads

Said offers an interesting perspective, yet his view on western politics can only be described as borderline conspiracism. Read full review

Review: Orientalism

User Review  - Charles Shapiro - Goodreads

This is a classic book on how the west views the east, more specifically the Arab east. It reviews the history and thinkers who visited the broad Middle East who were western. His main thesis is that ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (2003)

David Dyergrew up in a coastal town in NSW, Australia, and graduated as dux of his high school in 1984. After commencing a degree in medicine and surgery at the University of Sydney, he soon decided it was not for him.

David went on to train as a ship's officer at the Australian Maritime College, travelling Australia and the world in a wide range of merchant ships. He graduated from the college with distinction and was awarded a number of prizes, including the Company of Master Mariners Award for highest overall achievement in the course. He then returned to the University of Sydney to complete a combined degree in Arts and Law. David was awarded the Frank Albert Prize for first place in Music I, High Distinctions in all English courses and First Class Honours in Law. From the mid-1990s until early 2000s David worked as a litigation lawyer in Sydney, and then in London at a legal practice whose parent firm represented the Titanic's owners back in 1912. In 2002 David returned to Australia and obtained a Diploma in Education from the University of New England, and commenced teaching English at Kambala, a school for girls in Sydney's eastern suburbs.

David has had a life-long obsession with the Titanic and has become an expert on the subject. In 2009 he was awarded a Commonwealth Government scholarship to write The Midni

Bibliographic information