American Orientalism: The United States and the Middle East by Douglas Little

By Douglas Little

Douglas Little exposes the patience of ''orientalist'' stereotypes in American pop culture and examines usa coverage towards the center East from many angles. Chapters specialise in America's expanding dependence on petroleum; U.S.-Israeli kin; the increase of innovative nationalist activities in Egypt, Iran, Iraq, and Libya; the futility of U.S. army and covert intervention; and the unsuccessful try and dealer a ''peace-for-land'' cost among the Israelis and the Palestinians. a brand new epilogue addresses the hot U.S. struggle in Iraq. Little bargains precious old context for somebody looking a greater realizing of the complex dating among the U.S. and the center East.

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Extra resources for American Orientalism: The United States and the Middle East since 1945

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Perhaps another million want to go,” Roosevelt informed Wagner on 3 December. ”55 Roosevelt learned just how ferocious Arab opposition to Zionism had become when, on the return leg of his trip to the great power summit at Yalta in early 1945, he sat down with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdul Aziz Ibn Saud. ”56 After his return to Washington, the aging and ailing president could not shake the image of the hawklike Saudi monarch, ensconced in a gold chair and surrounded by six slaves, thundering against Zionist plans to carve out an enclave in Palestine.

It casts you back at once into your forgotten boyhood, and again you dream over the wonders of the Arabian Nights; again your companions are princes, your lord is the Caliph Haroun Al Raschid, and your servants are terrific giants and genii that come with smoke and lightning and thunder, and go as a storm goes when they depart! —Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad (1869) Most Americans now know better than to use nasty generalizations about ethnic or religious groups. Disparaging stereotypes—the avaricious Jew, the sneaky Chinese, the dumb Irishman, the lazy black person—are now so unacceptable that it’s a shock to hear them mentioned.

The missionaries, tourists, and merchants who sailed from America into the Eastern Mediterranean during the nineteenth century were amazed by the Christian relics and biblical landscapes but appalled by the despotic governments and decadent societies that they encountered from Constantinople to Cairo. S. interests in the Middle East during the twentieth century converted these earlier cultural assumptions and racial stereotypes into an irresistible intellectual shorthand for handling the “backward” Muslims and the “headstrong” Jews whose objectives frequently clashed with America’s.

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