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Chapter 6

Colonialism, Imperialism, Orientalism

Industrialization and a free-market economy fueled the engine of colonialism. Artists usually documented new peoples and places according to pre-existing conventions. Sometimes they portrayed distant places as pristine edens and their inhabitants as unspoiled by Western developments and living in harmonious symbiosis with nature. Other times they viewed them as wild and in need of taming by Western civilization and Christianity. Lack of understanding enabled the projection of Western anxieties and fantasies leading to such concepts as the Noble Savage and the Exotic Orient. The portrayl of Native Americans and African slaves conformed to these stereotypes.   

Readings:

Anderson, Matthew Smith. The Great Powers and the Near East 1774-1923. London:  Edward Arnold, 1970

Bhabha, Homi K. “The Other Question: Difference, Discrimination and the Discourse of Colonialism,” in Francis Barker, et. al., eds. Literature, Politics and Theory. London and New York: Methuen, 1986

Bryson, Norman. Tradition and Desire: From David to Delacroix. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1984

Carrott, Richard G. The Egyptian Revival: Its Sources, Monuments, and Meaning, 1808-1858. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1978

Gobineau, Arthur, comte de. Comte de Gobineau and Orientalism: Selected Eastern Writings (c. 1860), Geoffrey Nash, ed. New York: Routledge, 2009

Hackforth-Jones, Jocelyn and Mary Roberts, eds. Edges of Empire: Orientalism and Visual Culture. Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2005

Lewis, Reina. Gendering Orientalism: Race, Femininity, and Representation. London: Routledge, 1996

Mazumdar, Sucheta. From Orientalism to Postcolonialism: Asia, Europe and the Lineages of Difference. London and New York: Routledge, 2009

Nochlin, Linda. “The Imaginary Orient,” Art in America, vol. 71 (May 1983): 118-31, 187-91

Peltre, Christine. Orientalism in Art. New York: Abbeville Press, 1998

Porterfield, Todd. The Allure of Empire: Art in the Service of French Imperialism, 1798-1836. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1998

Said, Edward. Orientalism. New York: Random House, 1978

Subtitle: 
Colonialism, Imperialism, Orientalism

Web Resources

YouTube: Edward Said on Orientalism 

 

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