The Many Faces of Edward Said

Photo: Gary Stevens

Timothy Brennan, Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota, has published a new biography of Edward Said, the feted Palestinian-American scholar and public intellectual, and his former PhD advisor at Columbia University. Places of Mind: A Life of Edward Said explores the different aspects of a quintessential 20th-century intellectual.

1 comment on “The Many Faces of Edward Said

  1. Greg Pollock says:

    A scientist cannot see the moon as unique if to later map the trajectory of asteroids, yet it is the moon, and no other, which gets us to those trajectories. Historical personages are like that moon. They seem all important, but are supported by millions of actions only partially seen. (I think the principle of sufficient reason wrong in science. There are always more influenced, but for what we need or measure a sufficient reason comes; perhaps principle of adequate reason is better. Sufficient reason as principle is an intellectual game to force conclusions which then allow choice of a principle of adequate reason.) History clearly turns at points on personages, but perhaps, more than admitted, in that others dodge that post, helping or placing some other therein. When I look at Said’s career and politics, I see a man who knew he could be replaced; but the world is full of naught but those who can be replaced. But can a Gandhi or Hitler be replaced? They both failed, yet I feel they both still contend in the world. Perhaps they were hyper-exemplars of processes, this the fake immortality history gives. I suspect biography is ever eulogy.

    In any case, another excellent interview.

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