Orientalism And Imperialism

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One of the major interpretations regarding modernity is that 'Modernity is a western idea'. This intention will lead to all kinds of Eurocentric perspective of viewing the world, let it be the Americas, Africa or Asia. Eurocentricism suggests that something is acceptable (like 'modernity' or 'culturally progressive', 'civilized' etc.) only if it is in line with the Western perspectives. The objective of acultural theory or Orientalism is derived from this ideology. The West had the Imperial power to define the history of the East or the 'Rest of World'. They used this imperial power or hegemony to show that they are superior to all other cultural groups or civilizations. The imperialist project helped in controlling the narration or recording…show more content…
But this is not unilateral. The implementation of colonialism was depended on the knowledge production also. According to Thomas Richards, the administrative group of the British Empire was build around the knowledge producing institutions like the British Museum, Royal geographic society, universities etc. This closeness helps to provide more data for the bureaucracy of the Empire. The data aided to implement their imperial control over the vast areas from their offices. The presence of administrative groups near to the knowledge producing centres assured the prohibition of interventions from other groups and also the British monopoly over these forms of knowledge. Thomas Richard also talks about 'fantasy of Imperial Archive'. The imperialists had access to large amount of data that allowed them to portray an image that they had access and control over vast territories which was in someway a hype. The modals of categories of data include artifacts, manuscripts, monuments etc. Lot of these objects of knowledge were occupied by Britons by simple looting. They captured valuable things like ivory, jewels and other materials. For example Tipu's Tiger, Kohinoor Diamond etc, which belongs to Asia were taken to Britain during the imperial…show more content…
For example, descriptions or narrations regarding practice of Sati or Thuggees in India were compiled by the Europeans. No one could say that these practices did not exist in this part of the world. Of course they existed but it was more about the Europeans' choice selection. The imperialists tent to choose certain events or data alone to represent or write the history of the East; thus covering or hiding certain other events or objects which could be used by one to actually appreciate the cultural vibrancy of the East. The main reason for this kind of Orientalist project was that it allowed a space for the West to show their supremacy over the East. The power or dominance helped them to implement this supremacy. When Said says about Orientalism as something that has more to do with the West rather than the East, the meaning is to show this supremacy. The modals of knowledge and archives were designed in such a way that this project was able to be implemented. The archival data related to a colony like India was designed by the Colonial power for their own betterment and not primarily to show the historical depth of this part of the world. This is what Foucault conveys through his concept of Archives as 'documents of exclusion'. It purposefully disregarded certain data and did

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