Outside the Teaching Machine by Gayatri Spivak

2753 Words Feb 23rd, 2018 11 Pages
Said’s Orientalism (1978) has been the foundational text of what has come to be known as postcolonial studies. In the book, Said charts the Western world’s construction(s) of “an inferior East” by underscoring how the authorizing/ authoritative “Occident” continues to produce an objectified and negatively stereotyped “Orient;” Drawing on Foucault’s concept of “discourse” and Gramsci’s notion of “hegemony,” Said traces the evolution of European power/ knowledge paradigms and their Western epistemologies—which he collectively calls “Orientalism.” (cite) Postcolonial Studies draws its strength from questioning the discourse of hegemonic representation very much what Said demonstrated in Orientalism. There seems a kind of consensus among schools about Said’s contribution to the development of the field called Postcolonial Studies. In her book Outside the Teaching Machine (1993), Gayatri Spivak credits Edward W. Said’s Orientalism as being the foundational text that not only helped forge a field of studies called “Postcolonial” but also for its counter theoretical moment in humanities. The credit goes to Said for unmasking the Western ideologies invested in the study of the orient and by extension of the colonized. In her words, “the study of colonial discourse, directly released by work such as Said's, has . . . blossomed into a garden where the marginal can speak and be spoken, even spoken for. It is an important part of the discipline…

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