It has occurred to me recently that arts nonprofits and politicians have something in common. They share decreasing audience and over-reliance on a shrinking pool of donors. Perhaps participation decline in live performing arts events and in political process shares some causes. I wonder if the time people used to spend on attending a concert, a play or considering political platform of a candidate is now spent on social media, surfing internet and binge watching TV.
This abdication of personal agency leaves a dangerous vacuum where perhaps few people than ever in history will be able to exercise unprecedented control over our politics and culture. At a time of growing economic inequality we as a society need personal agency more than ever. Active, well-informed citizenry can hold politicians accountable and better counteract the influence of capital in politics. Similarly, society which supports cultural institutions has a stronger ethos rooted in commonly shared set of beliefs and therefore not as easily manipulated. I do hope that people eventually realize that technological empowerment can too easily become imprisonment, I just don’t know if it will be too late.
August 18, 2019
It has occurred to me recently that arts nonprofits and politicians have something in common. They share decreasing audience and over-reliance on a sh...