Orientalism is knowledge or customs specific to Asian culture, people or language.
An example of Orientalism is Japantown in San Francisco.
- any trait, quality, mannerism, etc. usually associated with people of the East
- the study of Eastern culture
Origin of Orientalismtitle of a book (1978) on this subject by E. Said (1935-2003), U.S. academic a viewpoint, as ascribed to some in the West, in which Asia or specif. the Arabic Middle East is seen variously as exotic, mysterious, irrational, etc.: term used to impute a patronizing attitude
Origin of Orientalismoriental + -ism
- Often Offensive A quality, mannerism, or custom specific to or characteristic of the Orient.
- Scholarly study of Asian cultures and languages, especially by Westerners.
- The adoption by Western artists of decorative elements evoking Asian or North African cultures.
- In the figurative arts, the tendency to represent eastern subjects, to assume stylistical characteristics original of the East.