It’s difficult to imagine the canon of 20th century scientific literature without Said’s Orientalism – the book which accelerated the postcolonial discourse, presenting an attempt at imagining the world devoid of Eurocentrism and a discussion about the influences of colonisation.

Although Said focuses on Western Asia and Islamic world, Orientalism is a book which everyone interested in Asia in general should read to understand the mechanisms beyond creating the popular vision of “the Orient”. Said emphasises that what we think we know about Asia, and all parts of the world different from our own, is just a vision created by someone else, often far from reality.

The book does not claim to be the objective truth and doesn’t instruct how we should see the world. Rather, it explains Said’s own perspective – as a Palestinian educated in “the West”. Despite some of his thoughts being occasionally controversial, Orientalismprovides a unique approach to the subject.

The book is also available in Polish translation – Orientalizm.

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