This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book argues that a deep interpretation of Edward Said’s literary studies of Orientalism, colonial-imperial history, and knowledge relations propels scholarship on schooling in ways that enrich our ability to generate insights about the educational enterprise, broadly speaking. It concentrates on four of Said’s themes: knowledge, the intellectual, exile, and contrapuntal analysis. The book is an argument for criticism’s proper place in education. But it is not criticism as understood in common parlance as only a negative move lacking any positive futurity. The book explains that educational criticism is the assertion of our human powers with the ultimate goal of humanization. It introduces the field of curriculum studies, an area of scholarship that has a long history in the educational literature.