By James O. Young
Now, for the 1st time, a thinker undertakes a scientific research of the ethical and aesthetic concerns to which cultural appropriation supplies upward push.
- Cultural appropriation is a pervasive function of the modern international (the Parthenon Marbles stay in London; white musicians from Bix Beiderbeck to Eric Clapton have appropriated musical kinds from African-American culture)
- Young deals the 1st systematic philosophical research of the ethical and aesthetic matters to which cultural appropriation provides rise
- Tackles head at the thorny matters coming up from the conflict and integration of cultures and their artifacts
- Questions thought of comprise: “Can cultural appropriation lead to the creation of aesthetically profitable works of art?” and “Is cultural appropriation within the arts morally objectionable?”
- Part of the extremely popular New instructions in Aesthetics sequence
Chapter 1 what's Cultural Appropriation? (pages 1–31):
Chapter 2 The Aesthetics of Cultural Appropriation (pages 32–62):
Chapter three Cultural Appropriation as robbery (pages 63–105):
Chapter four Cultural Appropriation as attack (pages 106–128):
Chapter five Profound Offence and Cultural Appropriation (pages 129–151):
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Extra resources for Cultural Appropriation and the Arts
See, for example, Coleman (2001). For an account of the scandal see Wimmer (1998), p. 6. 39 The Aesthetics of Cultural Appropriation judges sided with Petyarre and allowed her to keep the prize, but many critics suspect that Beamish’s contribution was much greater than she allowed. Dots produced by Beamish are highly regular and evenly spaced, unlike those of his former spouse. This seems to support his claim to have produced the work in question. This is not an isolated case. Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri is one of the most prominent Australian aboriginal painters but there is evidence that non-aboriginal assistants have contributed to the production of some of his works.
If this person starts painting in the style of the Ganalbingu people, we can be quite sure that he is an outsider for the purposes of determining whether cultural appropriation has occurred. In writing The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency (1999) and its sequels, Alexander McCall Smith is clearly writing about a culture other than his own (even though he lived in Botswana for a time). The claim that he is engaged in subject appropriation is uncontroversial. In denying that cultures can be defined in terms of necessary and sufficient conditions I am treading on some sensitive territory.
25 What Is Cultural Appropriation? Even if an act of cultural appropriation is not harmful, it might still be wrong. The act could be, in Joel Feinberg’s sense of the word, profoundly offensive. An action is harmful if it is a direct setback to someone’s interests. Acts of theft are clear cases of harm. To deprive people of property that is rightfully theirs is to harm them by hindering them in the pursuit of their ends. If people are deprived of their culture, they are also, perhaps more seriously, harmed.
Cultural Appropriation and the Arts by James O. Young