Wednesday, June 28, 2006

How it all started - Why the New Culture Forum?

There is a general acknowledgement of the fact that, in the last quarter of the 20th century the Right decisively won the important economic arguments. At the same time, few would demur from the view that in the so-called Culture Wars, the Left were ultimately victorious.

In the past decade, the triumph of political correctness and cultural relativism in the arts, academia and large sections of the media has meant that these left-leaning attitudes have become even more deeply entrenched. What started out as a counter-culture has become the reigning orthodoxy.

This orthodoxy now goes virtually unchallenged. Indeed with the recent movement of the political right towards the so-called ‘centre ground’, even fewer dissenting voices are heard. Increasingly, the arts and media represent the creative wing of this establishment.

For example:

. a survey of the cultural scene would find no play, novel, film or piece of visual art which seriously questions the basic tenets of multiculturalism
. the need to tick politically correct boxes now dominates much of arts funding and the commissioning of public art
. the narrative of the Thatcher years has been stolen and shaped by those in the arts and media most opposed to it

More and more people in Britain are dissatisfied with the deadening hand this has cast over political discourse, and the stifling of real debate in the arts and media. When issues are discussed, it is done within tightly controlled guidelines based on supposedly universally held assumptions.

We have formed the New Culture Forum as a response to this situation. A voluntary association of people who work in the arts and the media, it is the first body of its kind to draw specifically on these areas.

Its functions will be:

. To provide a forum, open to everyone, for the discussion and debate of trends and issues within the arts and media which is not restricted by politically correct diktats.
. To promote right-of-centre and other dissenting ideas and views across all sections of the media and arts
. To encourage right-of-centre artists, writers and creatives in all fields
. To challenge the strangle-hold of political correctness in the arts and media
. To provide a strong basis for mutual support and association for the politically conservative, right-of-centre and any other dissenting voices who work in the arts and media in whatever capacity

We believe it is a mistake to assume that people are, as is often claimed by politicians, politically disengaged. Increasing numbers of us are very passionate about political and cultural issues, but feel there is no outlet within an atmosphere which is dominated by the existence of a politically correct group-think. The New Culture Forum welcomes anybody who cares about real debate, and who believes there is more than just one side to an argument.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The group sounds like a great idea. Is there a mailing list that I could be put on?

David Mawdsley