Something I have always had to deal with in regards to my insatiable interest in East Asian culture is trying my utmost to avoid the label of orientalist. It's interesting for me to note that I wasn't even aware of this term until last semester when I took a very interesting course called "approaches to East Asia" which I have mentioned in a previous post. In one of the tutorials for this course we, the students (many of which were EAS majors), were forced to ask ourselves if we were, in fact, orientalists.
|Edward Said's famous book exploring the problematic nature of orientalism and related topics.|
|Here's a sweater you can order online, the characters or Kanji more-or-less translate to "Japanophile". So yeah it's actually a thing, and, it would appear, celebrated by some.|
|This is apparently an actual magazine, the currency is in Yen which means it's likely Japanese. Yikes.|
|A famous illustration of Marco Polo dressed as a Tartar, perhaps the picture itself is an earlier example of Orientalism.|