Asst.Prof. Verita Sriratana took part in a panel discussion at “Stories from the East Stories from the West”, an event created by the Embassy of Italy held on Saturday 9th November. The event included an interactive discussion on these topics and the presentation of an anthology of micro-stories gathered and published for the occasion. More than 200 people of different nationalities took part in a lively and inspiring dialogue between the East and the West.
Ajarn Verita says “as a literary jury member who helped to select the microstories published as part of the “Stories from the East, Stories from the West” anthology, the topic of my lecture, “Stories and the East-West Dichotomy”, reflects my attempt to deconstruct via postcolonial and postmodern theories the “grand narratives” of East vs West. Plato, Edward Said, Lyotard, Barthes were explained and applied to support my thesis. I argue that multiple narratives —with their particular contexts and cultural baggage — are needed to help us dismantle the absolutism of one view of looking at East vs West, which can be “orientalist”. One cannot have an “unbiased” dialogue about culture but one can rewrite and revise the negative connotation in the word “bias” when one accepts that one shares with others the diversity of one’s particular views and experiences of culture and society”.