Blog 5: How Orientalism fuels modern day colonialism

Edward Said’s “Orientalism (1978),… denounces “subtle and persistent Eurocentric prejudice against Arabo-Islamic peoples and their culture,” arguing that these biases have served as a justification for the West’s imperial ambitions in the Middle East and Asia.” (Edward Said Biography)

Orientalism was a term coined by Edward Said, referring to how the West (or Occident) views what it collectively calls the Orient (anything laying outside Europe, Canada and the U.S.). It is this binary which helps to legitimize current conflicts in the Middle East which are perpetuated by the West’s Neo-Colonialism.

The article Malala Yousafzai and the White Saviour Complex takes aim at journalists and politicians in the West who propagate the “White Savior Complex,” which helps legitimize and perpetuate current conflicts caused by the West in the Middle East. This current form of Orientalism has “hijacked Malala’s message,” a young Pakistani girl whose protests to an education were met with an attempt on her life. The West continues to ignore the root of such maladies, which are primarily caused by it’s own military action, vieled under the guise of woman’s rights. The public are then convinced of the “savage” nature of the Middle East, justifying the damage it’s wars have caused.

–is a youtube video interview which is here for context.


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