Lemon, Jamie Jon

Jamie Lemon
Start date:
October 2013
Research Topic:
Orientalism in French Academia concerning the causes of the Arab Spring
Research Supervisor:
Mr Robert Bideleux & Prof Gordon Cumming
Supervising school:
College of Arts and Humanities,
Primary funding source:
ESRC Studentship

My thesis will examine the ways in which French Academics have covered and explained the causes of the Arab Spring in North Africa. I will show that whilst some opinions have changed regarding the viability of democracy and civil society in North Africa, the basic Orientalist and Eurocentric suppositions remain. Firstly, I will conduct an analysis of how academic institutions and regimes perpetuate existing paradigms. This will include an analysis of the funding systems, relations between the academic world and the political, as well as giving examples of how French academics treat ‘indigenous’ objects and subjects in North Africa. Secondly, I will conduct a discourse analysis of writing produced by academics within a certain group ( the make-up of the group as of yet undecided) for examples of meta-narratives which conform to an Orientalist or Eurocentric world-views.