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Art, and Racism

I appreciate the postings. Along with the events of the last few days, they have made me think.

I would encourage people to discharge not only on the taking of human life but also on the oppression of Muslims. Unfortunately, these killings are being used to demonize Muslims, to attribute the fears of us in the Western world to Muslims, and our problems to “Muslim terrorism.” This is similar to how after the September 11, 2001, attacks in the United States, the Bush administration used the events to harden and make more oppressive U.S. foreign policy.

Particularly in the Western world, when people identify with the cartoonists, they seem to be identifying with the so-called “right” of a for-profit business to publish anything that its writers and cartoonists wish to say about anything—including their drawing pictures that have a racist or sexist content—on the basis of freedom of speech.

The cartoonists are not to blame for their deaths; nor are they to blame for the destructive forces in society. But sometimes cartoonists are agents of distorted ideas that can create a racist climate. (I have heard people defend their right to their cartoons in a way that resembles how some people defend pornographers’ right to publish pornography.)

Hopefully intelligent ideas will be offered, rather than a rigid nationalism or other reactive responses. I do find it interesting to look at what re-emergent liberation art is all about—for example, the way Harvey Jackins describes it in The Good and the Great in Art—and how good art portrays humans. What does good art look like today?

Diane Balser
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, USA
Reprinted from the RC e-mail
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1 See previous two articles.
2 George W. Bush, President of the United States from 2001 to 2009


Last modified: 2022-12-25 10:17:04+00