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Orientalism and Colonialism

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Orientalism and Colonialism

Edward Said describes Orientalism as the ethnocentric way Europe approaches the Asian territories. Europeans looked upon the people of the Orient and Arabic states as "gullible" and "devoid of energy and initiative." The invasion of European nations proved a drastic decline in the natural prosperity of every nation they encountered. Europe forced the destruction of these once great lands by three methods; Anglo-based propaganda as a method of education, the deletion of history from the invaded land, as well as, the assimilation of their culture.

European propagandists played an important role with the conquering of foreign lands. Domestic support fostered in the European belief that they were improving the lives of valueless, shiftless imbeciles. There is no doubt that the West felt significantly superior to the East. This theory not only holds true to the Arabic and Asiatic states, but also for colonized countries in South America and Africa. Europe used their technological might and arrogant attitude to exploit the globe. However, to gain support of domestic citizens, European writings were used to paint a picture of a clan of people living in darkness and void. The scholars of that day carefully selected the publicity of their new conquests by cloaking it with a sentiment of charity and Christianity.

Little recognition was given to the past cultures of these people. The plan was quite simple. They wanted to invade the territory, strip it of all its history and rebuild its past in the manner the Europeans saw fit. This is a very wise move in the tactics to strengthen the West's cause. Not only does wreck the morale of the invaded country's inhabitants, but it sends a loud and clear message that the history is insignificant and inferior to western history. Deporting of local treasures, deleting historic records and documents and defacing historic structures intended locals to forget about the past grandeur and focus of the supposed bright future of the West.

The third method used by the Europeans is the assimilation of culture to the countries they colonized. Eurocentric-based training and education children of the colonized states proved the modeling of natives that were European in mind and values however unchanged in the exterior. By assimilating native culture into their own they gain more control and authority in that area. Indigenous children learning western ways of culture and natives who aid in the European exploitation, successfully gives the West control the land. In addition, once a new culture ...

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