‘The politics of cultural value: Towards an emancipatory framework’ – interesting new post by Dr Eleonora Belfiore about whether cultural policy and arts funding can support social justice and emancipation. My feeling is, no. State policy and grant giving is always politically laden with issues of power. Only a utopian paradigm shift in how government works could possibly go some way to achieving this.
Nevertheless, this is an excellent project and its work with gypsies and travellers is close to my heart. Great people; not so sure about using an arts management co. called ‘Cultural Solutions’?
As a cultural policy scholar, the question of cultural value has always fascinated me, as it goes to the very core of how public policies for the arts and culture work. The reason for the centrality of the cultural value question to cultural, and more specifically arts policies (which is the area on which my own work focuses) has been explained very succinctly, but also compellingly, by Richard Hoggart in The Way We Live Now. Here Hoggart says that the problem is, quite simply, that “there will never be enough money”. As a result, “Choices will always have to be made, judgments-between”. These choices and ‘judgments-between’ are clearly both driven by, and the reflection of, a society’ predominant cultural values.
Whilst judgments of value are the bread and butter of cultural policies, the label ‘cultural value’ has captured the imagination of researchers, arts sector professionals and even creative producers in…
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