Orientalism refers to the imitation or depiction of aspects of Eastern cultures in the West by writers, designers and artists. An "Orientalist" may be a person engaged in these activities, but it is also the traditional term for any scholar of Oriental studies. Orientalism was more widely used in art history referring mostly to the works of French artists in the 19th century, whose subject matter, color and style used elements from their travel to the Mediterranean countries of North Africa and the Near East (or western Asia).

These meanings were given a new twist by 20th century scholar Edward Said in his controversial book Orientalism, in which he uses the term to describe a Western tradition, both academic and artistic, of hostile and deprecatory views of the East, shaped by the attitudes of European imperialism in the 18th and 19th centuries. When used in this sense, Orientalism implies essentializing and prejudiced outsider interpretations of Eastern cultures and peoples. Said was critical of this scholarly tradition and also of certain modern scholars, particularly Bernard Lewis.

In contrast, some modern scholars have used the term to refer to writers of the Imperialist era who had pro-Eastern attitudes, as opposed to those who saw nothing of value in non-Western cultures.

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Page 3 of 89   Paintings: 1059
Joseph and Mary arrive at Bethlehem but find there... - William Brassey Hole - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Joseph and Mary arrive at Bethlehem but find there...
William Brassey Hole
Arabs Crossing The Desert - Jean-Léon Gérôme - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Arabs Crossing The Desert
Jean-Léon Gérôme
The Harem - John Frederick Lewis - www.orientalism-in-art.org
The Harem
John Frederick Lewis
A Café in Cairo - Jean-Léon Gérôme - www.orientalism-in-art.org
A Café in Cairo
Jean-Léon Gérôme
A paralytic man being let down through the roof - William Brassey Hole - www.orientalism-in-art.org
A paralytic man being let down through the roof
William Brassey Hole
Queen Victoria 1819-1901 and Prince Albert 1819-61... - Edouard Pingret - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Queen Victoria 1819-1901 and Prince Albert 1819-61...
Edouard Pingret
The report of the spies and remonstrance of Caleb - William Brassey Hole - www.orientalism-in-art.org
The report of the spies and remonstrance of Caleb
William Brassey Hole
Allumeuse de Narghilé (The Teaser of the Narghile)... - Jean-Léon Gérôme - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Allumeuse de Narghilé (The Teaser of the Narghile)...
Jean-Léon Gérôme
A Chat By The Fireside - Jean-Léon Gérôme - www.orientalism-in-art.org
A Chat By The Fireside
Jean-Léon Gérôme
Danae And The Shower Of Gold - Leon Francois Comerre - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Danae And The Shower Of Gold
Leon Francois Comerre
Picking The Favourite - Giulio Rosati - www.orientalism-in-art.org
Picking The Favourite
Giulio Rosati
The Toilet of the Odalisque - Leopold de Moulignon - www.orientalism-in-art.org
The Toilet of the Odalisque
Leopold de Moulignon

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Page 3 of 89   Paintings: 1059