Daily Archives: Wednesday, 23 March, 2011

Channel Your Inner Orientalist

Too bad I can’t remember what led me to this site, khowaga, which is having an orientalist-writes-about-the-Egyptian-revolution contest. The entries have me giggling. Won’t you try your hand?

A couple excerpts from the current entries:

In fact, I have omitted a final sorrow: the Arab world’s crippling inability to think for itself. Such a problem is hardly unique to the Arab world; it has afflicted the Persians and the Turks for centuries, and even of late some once-noble peoples, such as the French. Lack of thought is a widespread problem through the darker part of the globe, sad as it may be to admit such things. This final failing of the Arabs is perhaps their most injurious, since it prevents them from altering any one of the other four. In a tragic irony, we can see the evidence of this even in the recent events that the fatuous have dubbed “the Egyptian revolution.”

and from a different entry:

Just as we might define ourselves in the west as right, free and true, the Mohammetan would gladly define himself as wrong, indentured and usually false. This lack stems not from an ugly geography, for the desolation of the desert inspires even the savage, but rather from a nature of imbalanced humors surfeited with excess yellow bile, too little sanguine, and only a hint of melancholia and phlegm! How can democracy grow without sufficient phlegm, after Aristotle? No one is adequately prepared to answer that question until about one month after zero oil output is reached.

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