I should make a couple of things clear at the outset, however. First of all, I shall be using the word ‘Orientalism’ less to refer to my book than to the problems to which my book is related; moreover I shall be dealing, as will be evident, with the intellectual and political territory covered both by Orientalism (the book) as well as the work I have done since. This imposes no obligation on my audience to have read me since Orientalism; I mention it only as an index of the fact that since writing Orientalism I have thought of myself as continuing to look at the problems that first interested me in that book but which are still far from resolved. Second, I would not want it to be thought that the licence afforded me by the present occasion - for which of course I am grateful - is an attempt to answer my critics. Fortunately, Orientalism elicited a great deal of comment, much of it positive and instructive, yet a fair amount of it hostile and in some cases (understandably) abusive. But the fact is that I have not digested and understood everything that was either written or said. Instead I have grasped some of the problems and answers proposed by some of my critics, and because they strike me as useful in focusing an argument, these are the ones I shall be taking into account in the comments that follow. Others - like my exclusion of German Orientalism, which no one has given any reason for me to have included - have frankly struck me as superficial or trivial, and there seems no point in even responding to them. Similarly the claims made by Dennis Porter, among others, that I am ahistorical and inconsistent, would have more interest if the virtues of consistency (whatever may be intended by the term) were subjected to rigorous analysis; as for my ahistoricity that too is a charge more weighty in assertion than it is in proof. Now let me quickly sketch the two sets of problems I’d like to deal with here. As a department of thought and expertise Orientalism of course refers to several overlapping domains: firstly, the changing historical and cultural relationship between Europe and Asia, a relationship with a 4,000-year-old history; secondly, the scientific discipline in the West according to which beginning in the early nineteenth century one specialised in the study of various Oriental cultures and traditions; and, thirdly, the ideological suppositions, images and fantasies about a currently important and politically urgent region of the world called the Orient. The relatively common denominator between these three aspects of Orientalism is the line separating Occident from Orient and this, I have argued, is less a fact of nature than it is a fact of human production, which I have called imaginative geography. This is, however, neither to say that the division between Orient and Occident is unchanging nor is it to say that it is simply fictional. It is to say-emphatically-that as with all aspects of what Vico calls the world of nations, the Orient and the Occident are facts produced by human beings, and as such must be studied as integral components of the social, and not the divine or natural, world. And because the social world includes the person or subject doing the studying as well as the object or realm being studied, it is imperative to include them both in any consideration of Orientalism for, obviously enough, there could be no Orientalism without, on the one hand, the Orientalists, and on the other, the Orientals.