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An International Workshop on Post-Orientalism/Un atelier international sur le post-orientalisme

21-22 September 2018
L. R. Wilson Institute, McMaster University (Hamilton, Ontario, Canada)

Orientalism, the book, unsettled the Western world forty years ago. Anti-Orientalism—that is, the transnational critique against Orientalism—became and, tragically, remains l’ordre du jour. Indeed, the publication of Edward Said’s canon in 1978 represented a powerful moment within the process of decolonization. The seminal text, at its point of origin, best articulated and empowered a Third World-led criticism against imperial culture and the politico-economic structure it sanctioned, to the broadest audience. Like others, Orientalism and its author wrote back against empire, exposing the latter’s continuity in the wake of the establishment of a liberal international order. Above all, they globalized both a message and a lesson that disparate anti-imperial activists, transnational networks, and international organizations had been stressing for quite some time: decolonization was/is a process, not an event; imperialism, contrary to mainstream Western imaginations, remained alive and well. As a result, Said’s Orientalism re-oriented both decolonization itself and its readers’ imaginations in different ways, regardless of their locations and positions in the world.

Organized by Maurice Jr. Labelle (University of Saskatchewan) and hosted by the L.R. Wilson Institute for Canadian History at McMaster University, this workshop seeks to unite scholars from Canada and around the world to critically reflect upon both the origins and travels of Orientalism, as well as their places in various parts of world (including—but not limited to—Canada) and their relations to decolonization. In the spirit of Orientalism’s 40th anniversary, the ensuing conversation between different times, sites, approaches, and faces aims to historicize post-Orientalism and expand its current conceptual scope in innovative ways. The symposium’s goal is to publish selected papers in an edited volume for the L.R. Wilson Rethinking Canada in the World Series with McGill-Queen’s University Press.

Orientalisme (le livre) a troublé le monde occidental dès son apparition il y a quarante ans. L’anti-orientalisme—c’est-à-dire une critique transnationale de l’orientalisme—devint et demeure tragiquement l’ordre du jour. La publication de l’œuvre d’Edward Said en 1978 représente un moment important dans la mondialisation du processus de décolonisation. À son point d’origine, ce texte fondamental articula une critique provenant du Tiers-Monde contre la culture impériale et sa structure socio-politique. Comme bien d’autres, Said critiqua l’impérialisme, exposant qu’elle continua à la suite de l’établissement d’un système international libéral. Avant tout, le texte et son auteur ont mondialisé un message et une leçon que plusieurs activistes anti-impérialistes, réseaux transnationaux, et organisations internationales avaient déjà compris depuis un certain temps: la décolonisation fut et est encore un processus et non un événement. Et contrairement à l’opinion populaire occidentale, l’impérialisme demeure une réalité. Ainsi, Orientalisme réorienta à la fois le processus de décolonisation et l’imaginations de ses lecteurs de façon différente, sans équivoque et indépendamment de leurs places dans le monde.

Organisé par Maurice Jr. Labelle (Université de Saskatchewan) et soutenu par l’institut Wilson d’histoire canadienne à l’université McMaster, cet atelier cherche à réunir des spécialistes du Canada et d’ailleurs afin de réfléchir sur les origines et la diffusion mondiale de Orientalisme, ainsi que sur sa place au sein du monde (incluant, mais non limité au Canada) et leurs relations avec le processus global de décolonisation. En tandem avec le quarantième anniversaire de Orientalisme, cet atelier a comme objectif d’historiciser le post-orientalisme et de développer son cadre analytique de façon innovante. À la suite de l’atelier, tous les participant(e)s seront invité(e)s à soumettre leurs contributions pour un ouvrage collectif édité par de l’institut Wilson – Rethinking Canada in the World Series – et publié par McGill-Queen’s University Press.


Tentative Programme: An International Workshop on Post-Orientalism/Un atelier international sur le post-orientalisme

 L.R. Wilson Institute for Canadian History

 

Thursday, September 20, 2018:

Keynote event: A Conversation with Dr. Lorenzo Veracini and Dr. Allyson Stevenson, 4-5pm.

McMaster University, Indigenous Circle (between the Faculty Club and Whidden Hall). **In the event of rain, this talk will take place at the Indigenous Ceremonial Room, L.R. Wilson Hall, room 1010.

 

Friday, September 21, 2018:

Breakfast at Hotel

All panels will be held at McMaster University, L.R. Wilson Hall, room 2001.

10:00 AM: Opening Remarks and Registration

10:30 AM: Panel 1: Living with Said’s Orientalism

Chair: Ian McKay (McMaster University)

  • Maurice Jr. Labelle, The Boomerang Effect of Decolonization
    • Discussant: Mark Philip Bradley (University of Chicago)
  • Mira Sucharov, Representation, Subjectivity and Justice: The Challenges and Demands of Allyship through the Public Intellectual Platform
    • Discussant: Abdel-Razzaq Takriti (University of Houston)

12:00 PM: Lunch

1:00 PM: Panel 2: What is Post-Orientalism?

Chair: Maurice Jr. Labelle (University of Saskatchewan)

  • Rachad Antonius, Les subalternes des subalternes peuvent-ils parler ? [Note: Rachad’s presentation will be in English, wheras his paper is written in French.]
    • Discussant: Mohammed Turki (Université de Tunis)
  • Mary-Ellen Kelm, Re-Evaluating Binarism: Postcolonial Studies, Settler Colonialism, and Indigenous Health Research in 20thCentury Canada
    • Discussant: Allyson Stevenson (University of Regina)
  • Laura Madokoro, Exile and Orientalism: Thoughts on Edward Said and the Study of Refugee History
    • Discussant: Sung-eun Choi (Bentley University)

2:30 PM: Break and light snacks

2:45 PM: Panel 3: Said and Anti-Orientalism

Chair: Virginia Aksan (McMaster University)

  • Lorenzo Veracini, Exodus or Revolution: ‘World Turned Inside Out’ vs. ‘World Turned Upside Down’ in a 1980s Exchange
    • Discussant: Laura Madokoro (McGill University)
  • Mohammed Turki, De la critique de l’Orientalisme au nouvel Humanisme
    • Discussant: Todd Shepard (Johns Hopkins University)

6:00PM Diner at Bean Bar

 

Saturday, September 22, 2018

 Breakfast at Hotel

 All panels in McMaster University, L.R. Wilson Hall, Room 2001

 10:30 AM: Panel 4: Transnational Origins of Said’s Orientalism

Chair: Brittany Luby (University of Guelph)

  • Yasmeen Abu-Laban, Edward Said and the Politics of Race
    • Discussant: Mira Sucharov (Carleton University)
  • Todd Shepard, Thinking ‘Arabs’ and Sex in Seventies France with Said
    • Discussant: Mary-Ellen Kelm (Simon Fraser University)
  • Sung-eun Choi, Rupture and Rebirth: Jacques Berque and the Mediterranean Path to Islamic Modernity
    • Discussant: Rachad Antonius (Université de Québec à Montréal)

12:00 PM: Lunch

1:00 PM: Panel 5: Traveling Orientalisms and Decolonial Consciousnesses in the World

Chair: Sean Mills (University of Toronto)

  • Mark Philip Bradley, When the World Went South: Orientalismand the Making of the Global South
    • Discussant: Lorenzo Veracini (Swinburne University of Technology)
  • Allyson Stevenson, Howard Adams: A Prairie Métis Critique of Canadian Imperialism
    • Discussant: Yasmeen Abu-Laban (University of Alberta)
  • Abdel-Razzaq Takriti, Orientalism and the Palestinian Revolution
    • Discussant: Maurice Jr. Labelle (University of Saskatchewan)

2:30 PM: Closing Remarks and End of Day 2