Identify an Arab historian who has written anything on Lawrence.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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While he might not be considered a traditionalist in terms of being a historian, I would suggest that Edward Said might be a source to examine in seeking to understand secondary source treatment of T.E. Lawrence.  I think that Said concluded fairly clearly that Lawrence suffered from the condition of Orientalism that defined the way in which "The West" viewed "the other."  The construction of seeing "the other" as one that needed help or viewing the world outside of their own condition in a paternalistic manner is where I think that Said concluded that Lawrence was caged by the perceptions of his time.  I think that one can create an alternate narrative that shows Lawrence to transcend distinctions such as "Orientalist," but in his own historical recreation, Said concludes that Lawrence suffered from much of what "the West" viewed the rest of the world as in terms of not being able to fully authenticate the voice and experience of this "other."  Said felt that Lawrence's attempts were merely extensions of the paradigm that European countries used to continue their Imperialist ways.


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