chapter  3
22 Pages

Orientalism, the geographical imagination and postcolonial spatialities

WithTariq Jazeel

This chapter engages one of the founding texts and ideas of postcolonial theory, Edward Said’s Orientalism. It discusses Said’s theory of Orientalism in depth and its implications for critical engagements with the geographical imagination and the politics of representation. It then discusses the influence of Orientalism on subsequent postcolonial geographical scholarship on ‘the geographical tradition’, ‘the colonial present’ and the war on terror, and so-called ‘Practical Orientalism’. The chapter also introduces some critiques of Orientalism, suggesting that thinking at, and with, its limits is a useful way of attending to the theory’s continued used today.