Evil Roots, Bitter Fruits?

Evil Roots, Bitter Fruits?

The role of money in public life

A proposal for PVAC’s 2011 Calendar


Fred is a Teaching Artist, an arts integration advocate & a social justice activist. He is near completing a two-month Residency as String Game Performance Teacher at Calabasas Elementary School in Watsonville, CA, and performed at the 2015 Santa Cruz Storytelling Festival. He also serves as Teacher Consultant for Professional Development with UCSC's Central California Writing Project and as their Technology Liaison to the National Writing Project. He is a Connected Learning Facilitator and coordinates Face To Face Drop Ins on Connected Learning biweekly at Arts Council Santa Cruz County. He teaches self-directed & connected learning via real-world projects & string games through his Original Digital Project, an Associate of the Arts Council.

Posted in Fred's
One comment on “Evil Roots, Bitter Fruits?
  1. fmindlin says:

    The premise of this exhibit is that artists can provide us with telling insights as we navigate the confrontation within America’s value system between the heritage of do-it-yourself, dog-eat-dog capitalism which has defined America for most its history, and the re-emergence of the underdog populism and community activist/organizer traditions in which a mostly marginalized left has labored in obscurity through most of the same decades. Obama’s community organizer credentials have precipitated a lively debate around values, fueled even more by the near collapse of the global financial system. Is money truly the root of all evil? Can a system based on competitive, bottom-line thinking be managed to meet the real needs of the entire community? Or do we need a new way of thinking about how we measure and evaluate the impacts of our economy on people’s real lives?

    Good money, bad money, no money

    Charity, poverty, community

    There is a deep resonance to this debate about money and values for artists in particular, because of the wide ranging and intense debate around issues of copyright and payment for intellectual work. The DMCA in the USA is an example of one extreme, where the fruits of art are essentially treated as commodities in commerce, and corporate giants wage battles and face down unions. Lewis Hyde’s “The Gift” enunciated the artist’s creed of freedom from the constraints of the money culture decades ago: “the premise that the work of art is a gift and not a commodity.” He is now at work on a treatise on the cultural commons.

    Another strong voice in the copyright/copyleft/creative commons argument has roots in Santa Cruz–Nina Paley, “America’s Best Loved Unknown Comic.”

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