Orientalism and Edwin Drood

Speaker: Jasa Rosseau, Dallas Baptist U
“Charles Dickens’ The Mystery of Edwin Drood through the Lens of Orientalism”

Indian sepoys attacked British army because made the Hindus create sacrilege by breaking their religious rules.
This made the empire-building of Britain become heroic, patriotic.
Patriotic plays and shows became common.
Fell in love with India because of the shows/plays.
Orientalism = coming to terms with love of India but based on its place in British empire

Predatory
Imperialistic tendencies
Clear difference between British and other
Foreigner = hunter

Dickens shows that predators are really those who choose vices of Orientalism rather than virtues of British.

Immediate disparity in England (and Jasper’s desires) between England and other

English cathedral tower and Arabic images in dreams

Addiction to opium would have immediately cast him as villain.

Collins says that Brit villains often had lustrous hair and moustaches, but having dark hair means he could have come from India.


Contender for villain:
Neville Landless and Helena (sister), landless orphans


Violence and thievery often given nobility b/c Dickens found injustice in poverty.

Hunter and hunted. Ambiguity.
Questions who is the real predator?

Maybe some of England’s problems due to hunting of England’s prey.

Notes from CCTE 2016.

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