Policies for Cultural Creativity

Linked with Nestor Garcia Canclini – Mexico, and with The Future of the Privatization of Culture.

By Néstor García Canclini, a long case study published on ‘The Power of Culture’, not dated. You may also read only their summary.

A small excerpt of a long case study: … One should also note the harmful effects of recent innovations such as technological discoveries which are diverted towards developing the armaments industry, or which increase air and water pollution, or cause large-scale unemployment when combined with economic policies which ignore the social needs of the majority. The risks involved in the possibility of manipulating genetic codes, and the use of medical and psychological advances in violation of human rights, create a whole set of danger zones in which creativity does not appear to be the best way to employ or regenerate natural and cultural resources. Here we must analyze creativity in the context of the new conditions of interculturality, globalization and the reorganization of the links between nature and society, and between local traditions and regional and worldwide integration processes.

Another look at the opposition between public/private, national/foreign:

Some of the changes in the ways in which creativity is promoted stem from the redistribution of power between private and public activities. In the West, firms have chiefly encouraged the arts and literature as patrons guided by the ideals of art for art’s sake and the freedom of individual creation of modern schools of aesthetics. Sponsors naturally sought prestige, and sometimes benefits other than those purely symbolic, but they declared that their support for creators had no motive but generosity and no aim but that of furthering the development of intellectual works (Moulin, 1992). Private sponsorship of culture began to change with the growth in the number of art dealers, the rise of a mass public, and the expansion of cultural industries in which private capital took the lead …

Final Remark: The cases studied above present specific ways of creating intra- and interregional policies to deal with more localized dilemmas arising from globalization. It is in the transnational field that technological advances are being made which are rapidly changing the conditions governing the exercise of creativity and the communication of its results: satellites, electronic communication and the computerization of economic, financial, scientific and cultural information. Yet it is precisely here that the bodies representing public interests are least well equipped. The structure of the public sphere continues in almost all cases to be coterminous with nation-states. Some experts therefore stress the urgent need for more balanced interaction between the public and private spheres in supranational processes, ranging from control over the destructive effects of the innovations described above to the dissemination of, and provision of more equitable access by all countries to, the progress being made in scientific, technological and artistic activity (Moragas, Parés y Maices, Roncagliolo, Yúdice). (Read the whole long case study on ‘The Power of Culture‘).

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