Edward Said Minority Lounge is located in North Quadrangle.
The Edward Said Minority Lounge is located on the third floor of North Quad.
- monday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- tuesday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- wednesday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- thursday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- friday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- saturday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- sunday: 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.
The Edward Said Lounge, dedicated in 2015, celebrates his contributions to humanities and to Arab American culture. It contains a poem dedicated to Said and written in Arabic by Mahmoud Darwish, Palestine’s poet laureate and Said’s friend. In addition, photographs of the Arab States line the perimeter of the room.Civic Engagement Work Edward Said used his power and influence as a tenured professor at Columbia University to critique Western scholarship of the Arab Islamic world. He published numerous books, such as Orientalism (1978) and Culture of Imperialism (1993), which argued that this scholarship was biased and projected a false and stereotyped vision of “otherness” on the Islamic world that facilitated Western colonial policy.
In addition to his literary work, Said was an outspoken proponent of the political rights of Palestinian people and the creation of an independent Palestinian state. He was elected as an independent member of the Palestine National Council (PNC) in 1977. The PNC is the legislative body of the Palestine Liberation Organization and serves as the parliament that represents all Palestinians inside and outside Palestinian territories. During his time on the PNC, Said was a proponent for the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and voted for the establishment of the State of Palestie. He ultimately quit his membership in 1993 to protest the internal politics of the PNC that led to the signning of the Oslo Accords.
In 2000, Said received sharp criticism for a photograph taken of him throwing a stone across the Lebanese-Israel border while on vacation in the Middle East. Said called this action a “symbolic gesture of joy” that Israeli occupation of Lebanon had ended. Despite calls for reprimand, Columbia released a statement of support for Said saying he was protected by academic freedom. This situation added nuance to the ongoing conversation about academic freedom, especially in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.