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Making England WesternOccidentalism, Race, and Imperial Culture$
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Saree Makdisi

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226923130

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226923154.001.0001

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Domineering over Others: Occidentalism, Empire, Moral Virtue

Domineering over Others: Occidentalism, Empire, Moral Virtue

(p.133) Chapter Three Domineering over Others: Occidentalism, Empire, Moral Virtue
Making England Western

Saree Makdisi

University of Chicago Press

This chapter argues that Jane Austen’s novel Mansfield Park—in connection with Britain’s changing national and imperial project and the emerging civilizing process—articulates some of the key cultural and political concerns underlying the emergent culture of Occidentalism. Central here is the vital new role of individual self-regulation rather than external, almost theatrical, regulation as the key to the subject who would form the core of Occidental culture, as well as the new role for women as the ideological guarantors of that self-regulation and key players in what came to be regarded as a civilizing mission unfolding both domestically and across the empire. In many ways, this makes Mansfield Park one of the key texts for understanding the profound cultural, political, and psycho-affective transformations of Occidentalization that took place all through the Romantic period and beyond.

Keywords:   Jane Austen, imperialism, moral virtue, Mansfield Park, Occidentalism, desire, individuality, subjectivity, civilizing mission, Romanticism

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