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"'40 years after Orientalism'. Configurations of Knowledge/Power today”

Published in 1978, Orientalism has been a seminal investigation on questions regarding cultural representation and hegemony, knowledge production and scholarship as well as governing the colonial and post-colonial Other. Offering a critical genealogy of a particular configuration of power, Orientalism has turned into a founding document of postcolonial scholarship and continues to significantly shape conversations of different disciplines. Despite Orientalism’s rigorous excavation and critique of the process by which strategies of knowing the colonized world operated as strategies for dominating it, Orientalism remains tenacious and far from obsolete. This seminar honors Orientalism’s 40th anniversary and its seminal legacy. It will do so by examining the persistence of Orientalism as a configuration of knowledge and power and ask what Said’s work and the various conversations it has triggered tell us today.

In the seminar we will read key passages of Orientalism as well as texts from various disciplines which engage with the work. The seminar will be complemented by a public lecture series in which renowned scholars will give public talks related to Said’s text and configurations of Orientalism today.


Dozent/inProf. Dr. Schirin Amir-Moazami Zubair Ahmed (Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies
Raum2.2059 Seminarraum (Fabeckstr. 23-25)

Do: 14:00-16:00


The seminar is open for MA-Students of Islamic Studies, Political Science and Anthropology as well as for PhD students of the Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies. Students are required to actively participate in both events and should be ready to read and discuss in English.