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Said’s legacy

The London Review of Books hosts a memorial debate on Palestinian scholar Edward Said.

James Heartfield

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On 28 November 2003, the London Review of Books hosts a memorial debate on the Palestinian activist and scholar, Edward Said, who died of leukaemia in October.

Said was one of a dwindling band of politically committed public intellectuals, who had made his mark both as a key thinker in the Palestinian movement and as an innovator in cultural theory in the West. After writing on the works of the novelist Joseph Conrad, Said took literary theory into an entirely new gear with his Orientalism (1978), which took literary sources to examine Western attitudes to the East.

At the same time Said was active in the Palestine National Congress, drafting the original proposals for a two-state solution. Later, he came to think that this was a dead end for Palestinians; he eventually favoured a unitary state of Palestinians and Jews, making what future they could together.

Discussing Said’s legacy at the School of Oriental and African Studies are veteran radical Tariq Ali, Mustafa Bargouti of the Palestine National Initiative, philosopher Jacqueline Rose and Ilan Pappe of Haifa University.

For more information, see The Legacy of Edward Said: A Public Discussion, London Review of Books

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