Audrey Calefas-Strebelle's Mapping Early Modern French Orientalism
project aims to study how images and ideas surrounding the Orient came to be and how they circulated. The French were among the first to widely travel the Orient and to write about their experience. By gathering data about these travelers and scholars, and by visualizing them, Mapping Early Modern French Orientalism aspires to address the following questions: who were the French Orientalists? What were their networks of communication, of relationship, and of education? How did they exchange information? How did ideas circulate and how was knowledge created and transmitted? What was the influence of their social networks in the circulation of knowledge and objects and in the shaping of the idea of the Orient first in France and then in the West? Mapping Early Modern French Orientalism seeks to answer these questions, using the spatial visualization capabilities of Palladio, by producing interactive maps, graphs, lists, tables, and galleries that reveal correlations, trends, and magnitude in the data that had remained hidden hitherto, such as travel patterns, time frames, frequencies, and degrees of separation between orientalists.