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Event Detail

MEI: Orientalism from the Standpoint of its Victims—An Edward Said Conference
Date: From November 07, 2008 at 9:00 am through November 08, 2008 at 5:00 pm EST
Location: Columbia University
Morningside Campus
International Affairs Building, Room 417 (Altschul Auditorium)
*Registration Required (see link at bottom)
Contact: For further information regarding this event, please contact Ryan White by sending email to rw2283@columbia.edu .

The Middle East Institute (MEI), Office of the Provost, Institute for Religion, Culture, and Public Life, Department of Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures, Department of Anthropology, Department of English and Comparative Literature present: "1948-1978: Orientalism from the Standpoint of its Victims--An Edward Said Conference."

Generously funded by the Office of the Provost, Middle East Institute, Institute for Religion, Culture, and Public Life, Department of Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures, Department of Anthropology, Department of English and Comparative Literature. 

Two books have unequally defined Edward Said’s career Orientalism and The Question of Palestine. Published only one year apart, they inaugurate two distinct projects whose relation remains tacit but consistently productive for Said as well as for his readers. One could figure the distinction as operating between the scholarly and the political. More entrenched, if no less imprecise, is the distinction between European representations and Palestinian realities. The purpose of this conference is to revisit the imagined geographies that link the question of Palestine and the Jewish question to the broader phenomenon of Orientalism in its enduring, historical aspects as well as to treat 1948 as a world-event enabled and prepared by the history and structures of Orientalism.

Columbia University is uniquely positioned to hold and sponsor this conference. Historically, the mutual relationship between Said and Columbia is a matter of evidence. Intellectually, it is also the case that Said’s legacy is particularly alive here. Practically, additional resources as well as issues of visibility make the venue simply imperative.

The list of participants exemplifies Said’s demand for an encounter between the colonizing and the colonized worlds, as well as a conversation across the disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, not a discourse of experts.


Participants:

Lila Abu-Lughod (Columbia, Anthropology)

Emily Apter (NYU, Comparative Literature)

Moustafa Bayoumi (CUNY – Brooklyn College, English)

Hamid Dabashi (Columbia, MEALAC)

Rashid Khalidi (Columbia, History)

Ussama Makdisi (Rice University, History)

Joseph Massad (Columbia, MEALAC)

Aamir Mufti (UCLA, Comparative Literature)

Marc Nichanian (Independent Scholar, New York, Armenian Studies and Philosophy)

Beth Povinelli (Columbia, Anthropology)

Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin (Ben-Gurion University, History)

Bruce Robbins (Columbia, English)

Andrew Rubin (Georgetown, English)

Abdul-Rahim al-Shaikh (Bir Zeit University, Cultural Studies and Philosophy),

Susan Slyomovics (UCLA, Anthropology and Near Eastern Languages & Cultures)

Michael Wood (Princeton, English)


Conveners:

Nadia Abu El-Haj (Columbia, Anthropology)

Gil Anidjar (Columbia, Religion)

Stathis Gourgouris (Columbia, Classics / ICLS)

 

Conference Schedule


DAY 1 (Nov 7)

8:30: Registration and Breakfast

9:00: Introduction

Opening Remarks by Mariam Said


9:30-10:30 Rashid Khalidi (Columbia, History), opening lecture


10:45-12:15 Susan Slyomovics (UCLA, Anthropology and Near Eastern Languages & Cultures), “Edward Said’s Nazareth

Respondent: Lila Abu-Lughod (Columbia, Anthropology)

 

2:00 – 3:30 Ussama Makdisi (Rice University, History) “Mythologizing Christian Zionists: American Missionaries and the Question of Palestine

Respondent: Elizabeth Povinelli (Columbia, Anthropology)

 

3:45 – 5:15 Marc Nichanian (Independent Scholar, New York, Armenian Studies and Philosophy), “Modern Philology and the Catastrophe”

Respondent: Andrew Rubin (Georgetown, English)

 

5:30 – 7:00  Keynote: Joseph Massad (Columbia, MEALAC), keynote lecture

 

DAY 2 (Nov 8)

9:00 Breakfast

9:30 - 11:00 Abdul-Rahim al-Shaikh (Bir Zeit University, Cultural Studies and Philosophy), “Palestinian Orientalism: Edward Said and the Post Oslo Palestinian Cultural Politics

Respondent: Hamid Dabashi (Columbia, MEALAC)


11:15 - 12:45 Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin (Ben-Gurion University, History) “Edward Said and the Decolonization of the Jews”

Respondent: Bruce Robbins (Columbia, English)

 

2:30 – 4:00 Michael Wood (Princeton, English), “Theories of Invisibility: Orientalism and the question of Palestine

Respondent: Moustafa Bayoumi (CUNY – Brooklyn College, English)


4:15 - 5:45 Aamir Mufti (UCLA, Comparative Literature), “The Missing Homeland of Edward Said”

Respondent: Emily Apter (NYU, Comparative Literature)