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Saree Makdisi - "Making England Western"

Wednesday, March 6, 2013 - 4:45pm to Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 10:00am

Kaufmann Auditorium, Goldwin Smith Hall (March 6th)
Toboggan Lodge, Cornell University (March 7th)

Saree Makdisi (Professor, English, University of California, Los Angeles)

Thursday, March 7, 2013
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Toboggan Lodge, 38 Forest Home Drive

Recommended reading click here

In this presentation, Saree Makdisi will argue that England in the years around 1800 was not what we would now recognize as a "Western" country; it had to be made so through a series of ideological, cultural, and material processes through the length of the nineteenth century.  Subaltern populations within England (let alone Ireland, Scotland and Wales) were regarded as civilizational and even racial others by a range of elite or "polite" observers. Thus the process of forming a civilizationally coherent national identity was complicated by the need to either purge or absorb this sense of otherness--by civilizing it--from within the putative space of the nation.

Saree Makdisi is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at UCLA, and the author of Romantic Imperialism (Cambridge University Press), William Blake and the Impossible History of the 1790s (University of Chicago Press), Palestine Inside Out: An Everyday Occupation (WW Norton), and the forthcoming Making England Western: Occidentalism, Race and Imperial Culture(University of Chicago Press). 

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