Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Is this wonderful article of today's date, Peter McKnight argues that contemporary sidelining of art and music in public education has a negative impact on society and productivity. He argues that the arts are often viewed as "ornamental" by those governments seeking to raid funding for the arts to fund "more essential" sectors. But, he argues, it is insufficient to put forward evidence – as many defenders of the arts do – that the arts are instrumental in supporting more technical pursuits such as math, science, law and politics.
"This impoverished view of the arts recognizes some of the benefits of an artistic education, but only by obscuring its deeper benefits, by concealing the fact that art helps us to engage, not only with math and language, but with life."
It is well worth the read for those defending the arts to consider elaborating the argument beyond the economic benefits and secondary educational benefits that are so often cited.