Culture and Imperialism Questions and Answers
by Edward W. Said

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Can anybody explain the notion of Edward Said regarding the role that media can play roles in facilitating imperialism? in short, what did he write about invasion and media?

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Edward Said (1935-2003) died only a matter of months following the U.S. invasion of Iraq earlier that year.  That he lived to witness what he considered yet another example of Western imperialism victimizing Arab and Muslim peoples would place a definite exclamation mark on his passing in September 2003.  Said had long argued, including in his landmark book Orientalism (1978), as well as in interviews and in other publications, that Western perceptions of the Middle East were severely distorted through the prism of occidental lenses.  Worse, he believed, was the degree to which Western media, especially in the United States, and especially with the introduction of television, portrayed Arabs and Muslims as inferior races to be subjugated and brutalized.  As he wrote in Orientalism,

“One aspect of the electronic, postmodern world is that there has been a reinforcement of the stereotypes by which the Orient is viewed. Television, the films, and all the media's resources have forced...

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