What is culture and art all about ?
Is it to collect all that is realized under the sky without any selection or is it to select from all those creations the ones that offer meaning about the times we live in ? In other words, is there sense in art or are all productions equally interesting and thus deserving collection?
Read in spiked-online 04/09/04.
"The pursuit of aesthetic or historical understanding, of attempting to distinguish good paintings from bad or correct interpretations from false ones, is deemed impossible. Instead, all cultural institutions can do is to revel in 'diversity', by promoting different kinds of art and competing judgements. Today's cultural policy rejects the ways of the traditional cultural elite, and presents itself as far more enlightened. However, if we examine the legacy that cultural diversity policy has rejected, we find that some valuable principles have been lost by the wayside."
"Cultural diversity policy is founded upon the collapse of traditional cultural policy. The celebration of 'diversity' for its own sake expresses the disorientation of the cultural elite, once belief in standards of cultural value had waned. But the same policy is also a response to this disorientation, providing a new logic and role for cultural institutions".
The latest attacks on multiculturalism in Britain have been coming from the left. "An elite that is unwilling to make judgements about why any one cultural practice is better than another, to set universal standards about what role individuals should be expected to play across society, and to promote a distinct set of values that a society should agree upon, finds a useful tool in multiculturalism. This is why it has been so well-suited to Western societies in the past few decades, increasingly disorientated by the erosion of cultural and political certainties. Clearly, the official promotion of multicultural policy has not provided any solution to this disorientation - indeed, by actively encouraging expressions of difference and divisions between communities, it may well have fuelled the process of fragmentation."
Art for inclusion's sake
Facing up to the M-word