Move over, Mona Lisa. Move over, Jane Eyre

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 15:30
Oral Presentation
Peggy LEVITT, Wellesley College, USA
Cultural inequality is part and parcel of global political and economic inequality. Until we even the cultural playing field by making it more diverse, we won’t do better at addressing other pressing socioeconomic challenges. My project explores the social, political, and economic conditions and institutions that allow artists and writers from what have been culturally peripheral regions to gain greater global prominence in the English speaking Global North. Using qualitative methods, including participant observation (at galleries, book fairs, museums, cultural events), document reviews, and interviews with cultural creators and codifiers (i.e. critics, publishers, collectors, patrons, curators) in Lebanon, Argentina, and South Korea, I will examine what factors expand the global literary and artistic canons and how they vary across regions, time, and genre. In what ways are the art and literary worlds rethinking categories such as canons, literacy, and national culture that might lead to greater cultural inclusiveness?