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New PDF release: Privileging Difference

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By Antony Easthope

ISBN-10: 0333786289

ISBN-13: 9780333786284

ISBN-10: 1403907048

ISBN-13: 9781403907042

During this learn of the importance and foregrounding of the idea that of distinction in modern, serious, literary and cultural concept, Antony Easthope examines seriously and polemically some of the articulations of distinction and the adjustments among thoughts and theories of distinction. Easthope bargains shut textual analyses of the most important theorists of the present new release together with Edward acknowledged, Homi Bhabha, Donna Haraway, Rosi Braidotti, Judith Butler, Terry Eagleton, Slavoj Zizek, Jacques Lacan and Jacques Derrida.

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This metalinguistic representation of the Orient is effected by means of ‘generalities’ (45; see also 103, 227). Western discourse constructs the East as though it were a nonhuman, non-signifying object, nature, rather than as a human, signifying object which is part of culture. Returning later to the others, I shall take (4) first, approaching it via the geography/history distinction. This might look a marginal issue in Orientalism, but in fact it focuses much wider problems. Said particularly holds it against Orientalism that it operates on the model of geography, on the grounds that, ‘although many learned disciplines imply a position taken towards, say, human material (a historian deals with the human past from a special vantage point in the present), there is no real analogy for taking a fixed, more or less total geographical position towards a wide variety of social, linguistic, political, and historical realities’ (50).

Aijaz Ahmad is particularly harsh in dismissing the view that Orientalism precedes modernity as not only ‘un-Marxist’ but ‘un-Foucauldian’ too (1992: 166). An attempt at recuperation is made when Orientalism draws a line in the late eighteenth century, after which the discourse acquired ‘corporate institution’ (Said 1995: 3). The Greeks in Aeschylus think the Persians are barbarians, and no doubt the Persians think the same of the Greeks. In one passage Said concedes that ‘some of the immediate sting’ is taken out of the accusation that Orientalism made ‘every European .

But at the same time a certain price was paid. To be quite clear: my proposal is that, as other definitions of identity came to supplant class as a focus of struggle, the utopian impulse showed itself in the way a typical question was typically answered. How can there be identity which does not disparage and deny the other which that same identity produces along with itself? Too often the reply was phrased not so much in these terms, but as a willingness to surrender any possible From Marxism to Difference 23 account of identity as presence, in favour of a privileging of difference.

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Privileging Difference by Antony Easthope


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