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  1. ilovepsycho's Avatar
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    #1

    Question Some questions on "Orientalism".

    Americans will not feel quite the same about the Orient, which for them is much more likely to be associated very differently with the Far East (China and Japan, mainly). Unlike the Americans, the French and the British—less so the Germans, Russians, Spanish, Portuguese, Italians, and Swiss—have had a long tradition of what I shall be calling Orientalism, a way of coming to terms with the Orient that is based on the Orient's special place in European Western experience. The Orient is not only adjacent to Europe; it is also the place of Europe's greatest and richest and oldest colonies, the source of its civilizations and languages, its cultural contestant, and one of its deepest and most recurring images of the Other.

    In addition, the Orient has helped to define Europe (or the West) as its contrasting image, idea, personality, experience. Yet none of this Orient is merely imaginative. The Orient is an integral part of European material civilization and culture. Orientalism expresses and represents that part culturally and even ideologically as a mode of discourse with supporting institutions, vocabulary, scholarship, imagery, doctrines, even colonial bureaucracies and colonial styles. In contrast, the American understanding of the Orient will seem considerably less dense, although our recent Japanese, Korean, and Indochinese adventures ought now to be creating a more sober, more realistic "Oriental" awareness. Moreover, the vastly expanded American political and economic role in the Near East (the Middle East) makes great claims on our understanding of that Orient.

    It will be clear to the reader (and will become clearer still throughout the many pages that follow) that by Orientalism I mean several things, all of them, in my opinion, interdependent. The most readily accepted designation for Orientalism is an academic one, and indeed the label still serves in a number of academic institutions. Anyone who teaches, writes about, or researches the Orient—and this applies whether the person is an anthropologist, sociologist, historian, or philologist—either in its specific or its general aspects, is an Orientalist, and what he or she does is Orientalism. Compared with Oriental studies or area studies, it is true that the term Orientalism is less preferred by specialists today, both because it is too vague and general and because it connotes the high-handed executive attitude of nineteenth-century and early-twentieth-century European colonialism. Nevertheless books are written and congresses held with "the Orient" as their main focus, with the Orientalist in his new or old guise as their main authority. The point is that even if it does not survive as it once did, Orientalism lives on academically.

    1. Which of the following best describes the author's attitude toward "Orientalism"?

    a. ambivalent
    b. approving
    c. bemused
    d. critical
    e. optimistic

    2. The author's chief purpose in writing this passage was __________.

    a. to compare the West with the East
    b. to criticize orientalism
    c. to give information on Oriental studies in America
    d. to justify the colonial rules by European countries
    e. to support orientalism and show the need for it

    3. According to the passage, which is NOT true?

    a. Orientalism lives on academically.
    b. The Spanish, Portuguese, and Italians have had a weaker tradition of Orientalism than the French and British.
    c. The Orient remains as one of its deepest and most recurring images of the Other among Europeans.
    d. In contrast to the Europeans, the Americans' understanding of the Orient will seem more deep-rooted.
    e. None of the above

    4. Why are Oriental studies or Oriental area studies preferred to the Orientalism among specialists? The reason is that _______.

    a. compared with Oriental studies or area studies, the Orientalism is more specific
    b. the Orientalism implies the autocratic attitude of the previous European imperialists
    c. Orientalism is a style of thought based upon an ontological and epistemological distinction
    d. Orientalism symbolizes the integral part of European material civilization
    e. None of the above


    The above passage is an excerpt of "Orientalism" written by Edward Said. OAs were "D", "B", "D", and "B", but the questions and answers seems sort of unacceptable to me. The passage itself is very difficult, but I've never thought that it is critical of "Orientalism". I don't understand.

    P.S. Is it that the sentences Unlike the Americans, the French and the British—less so the Germans, Russians, Spanish, Portuguese, Italians, and Swiss—have had a long tradition of what I shall be calling Orientalism express that the Americans have had the most weaker tradition of "Orientalism" of many countries mentioned; that the French and the British have had the longest of that; and the Germans, Russians, etc have had less long one than that of the French and the British? In short, the French and the British > the Germans, Russians, etc > the Americans?
    Therefore, the choice "B" of the second question above is a wrong answer?
    I've thought of that as the Germans, Russians, etc > the French and the British > the Americans.
    I'm very confused!
    Last edited by ilovepsycho; 25-Nov-2009 at 03:26.

  2. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: A passage on "Orientalism".

    I don't find the answers very definitive in this case either. Why are you poring over these so intently? Multiple choice practice doesn't improve your English skills. You're already fine for the IELTS or CELT.

  3. ilovepsycho's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: A passage on "Orientalism".

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    I don't find the answers very definitive in this case either. Why are you poring over these so intently? Multiple choice practice doesn't improve your English skills. You're already fine for the IELTS or CELT.
    I think that English education of my country seems very poor, and that the teachers and the designers of those sorts of questions who work in private educational institutes also seem very poor. In fact, I've found many books written by Korean in Korean language that explain wrong grammars and so on, compared with the American books or British books or many English Dictionaries.

  4. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: A passage on "Orientalism".

    Your English is already great. Now you can just read books you love, and chat and watch DVDs and TV shows you like. Forget practice exams. They stress you and they're not as correct as you think. I see 25 % of their questions as hastiliy put together and not worth thinking about.

  5. ilovepsycho's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: A passage on "Orientalism".

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    Your English is already great. Now you can just read books you love, and chat and watch DVDs and TV shows you like. Forget practice exams. They stress you and they're not as correct as you think. I see 25 % of their questions as hastiliy put together and not worth thinking about.
    Thank you so much for your advice! But, I cannot stop going on with that sort of practice because there remains little time for the exam that I have prepared for more than 1 year! D-Day is 24.

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