Edward said s clash of ignorance

But as many instances, if not more, can be presented that contradict his thesis. For Reprints and Permissions, click here. Think of the populations today of France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Britain, America, even Sweden, and you must concede that Islam is no longer on the fringes of the West but at its center.

Sure enough, the author finds enough instances in history that substantiate his claims. Yet, the leaders of so-called progressive West continue to maintain strong business and political relations with it.

As the s turned over to the 90s, and as Saddam Hussein refused to follow orders from Washington not on grounds of culture and civilization but on grounds of asserting his autonomy in the region he turns from friend to foe.

But then such fluid ideas, full of ambiguity and skepticism about notions that we hold on to, scarcely furnish us with suitable, practical guidelines for situations such as the one we face now. Theirs is a very limited and time-bound political agenda. Certainly neither Huntington nor Lewis has much time to spare for the internal dynamics and plurality of every civilization, or for the fact that the major contest in most modern cultures concerns the definition or interpretation of each culture, or for the unattractive possibility that a great deal of demagogy and downright ignorance is involved in presuming to speak for a whole religion or civilization.

Said ends this article by restating his criticism of this forced dichotomy and over-simplication by Huntington and his intellectual followers in Western media and governments.

There is still no decent history or demystification of the many-sided contest among these three followers—not one of them by any means a monolithic, unified camp—of the most jealous of all gods, even though the bloody modern convergence on Palestine furnishes a rich secular instance of what has been so tragically irreconcilable about them.

These are tense times, but it is better to think in terms of powerful and powerless communities, the secular politics of reason and ignorance, and universal principles of justice and injustice, than to wander off in search of vast abstractions that may give momentary satisfaction but little self-knowledge or informed analysis.

For there are closer ties between apparently warring civilizations than most of us would like to believe; both Freud and Nietzsche showed how the traffic across carefully maintained, even policed boundaries moves with often terrifying ease.

Huntington correctly points out that in the hundred years before the end of Cold War there have been radical transformations from monarchy to communism to democracy, from liberal capitalism to stringent economic protectionism, and vice versa across the globe.

Then there is the persisting legacy of monotheism itself, the Abrahamic religions, as Louis Massignon aptly called them. One cannot easily do so, of course. Because of his advocacy for Palestinian self-determination and his membership in the Palestine National Council, Said was not allowed to visit Palestine until several years ago.

Said draws further attention to this failure in acknowledging similarities when he criticizes the lack of parallels drawn between the atrocity of September 11th, which was made in the name of Islam, with similar, albeit lesser, atrocities which have been committed in the name of western religions, using examples such as the Branch Davidians and the adherents of the Reverend Jim Jones.

How finally inadequate are the labels, generalizations and cultural assertions. I remember interrupting a man who, after a lecture I had given at a West Bank university inrose from the audience and started to attack my ideas as "Western," as opposed to the strict Islamic ones he espoused.

Beginning with Judaism and Christianity, each is a successor haunted by what came before; for Muslims, Islam fulfills and ends the line of prophecy. The author goes on to identify eight major civilizations in the new world order.

“Clash of Ignorance”-By Edward W. Said

He came to the United States to attend college and lived in New York for many years. For example, instead of working upwards from the pool of empirical evidence, Huntington establishes his thesis at the outset and goes looking for supporting evidence. His point thus losses strength when he has to quote outrageous political figures like Silvio Berlusconi to represent the dialogue of the West.

Said We mourn the loss of Edward Said, who passed away on the morning of Thursday, September 25, Samuel Huntington's article "The Clash of Civilizations?" appeared in the Summer issue of Foreign Affairs, where it immediately attracted a surprising amount of attention and reaction.

The Clash of Ignorance

1 The Clash of Ignorance Edward W. Said | October 4, Samuel Huntington's article "The Clash of Civilizations?" appeared in the Summer issue of Foreign Affairs, where it immediately attracted a surprising amount of attention and reaction.

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Edward W. Said, the late University Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, was for many years the magazine’s classical music critic as well as a contributing writer. Edward W. Said We mourn the loss of Edward Said, who passed away on the morning of Thursday, September 25, Edward W.

Said, the late University Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, was for many years the magazine's classical music critic as well as a contributing writer.

Certainly neither Huntington nor Lewis has much time to spare for the internal dynamics and plurality of every civilization, or for the fact that the major contest in most modern cultures concerns the definition or interpretation of each culture, or for the unattractive possibility that a great deal of demagogy and downright ignorance is involved in presuming to speak for a whole religion or civilization.

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Edward said s clash of ignorance
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