Aesthetic Communities, Peripheral Identities and Social Movements (Essay) - Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy

Aesthetic Communities, Peripheral Identities and Social Movements (Essay)

By Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy

  • Release Date: 2010-07-01
  • Genre: Religion & Spirituality
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Aesthetic Communities, Peripheral Identities and Social Movements (Essay) Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy Book Review Score: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars

The concept of resistance, often accompanied by a qualifier, refers to multiple realities. One can talk of armed resistance, passive resistance, political resistance and social resistance. However, making such distinctions should not make us forget that the effectiveness of resistance depends on a combination of activities of different but complementary natures. While each of them is worth considering, the cultural dimension calls for special attention. Indeed, we work on the assumption that the latter is not only present in all forms of resistance, but is an essential, integral part of it. In other words, whatever its form, a resistance movement necessarily includes cultural resistance. It is enough to remember that art and culture have always been the ultimate bulwark against injustice, oppression and barbarism. The particularity of cultural mediations resides in their ability to touch the innermost subjectivity and individuality of the human being. Culture is the location of those elements of civilization that allow for the emergence of collective and individual identities. Culture encompasses not only the formation of individuality through a conscious appropriation of values, but also the formation of ethnic, linguistic, social and political structures. The cultural factor is therefore significant, especially if we consider that the submission of a human group can be obtained, to some extent, by the neutralization of its culture. Conversely, the processes of emancipation of oppressed societies are intrinsically linked to the vitality of their cultural practices. Indeed, it can be reasonably assumed that most major political events, be they social movements, revolutions, or the birth of nation-states, could hardly have occurred had they not been preceded by intense activity in the literary-aesthetic sphere. (1)

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