Sunday, 14 February 2010
Censorship and auto-censorship is a deep conditioning in the Arab world. We get used to it, we live by it, we abide by it, we move on with our lives without thinking about how much is censored and how far can censorship affect us.
Then in Paris, France, the Minister of Culture, Frederique Mitterrand, pulls a stunt and makes a stand against censorship.
The famous "Ecole des Beaux Arts" was established in the 17th century and has kept up with the highest standards of education in all forms of arts and very demanding classwork. This week, they had sponsored an exhibition by their alumni students and Ko Siu Lin put banners on the outside walls of the institution. She did not use sex, drugs or illegal substance for her works. It was just four words : travailler - moins - gagner - plus (work - less - earn - more).
She used the French president's slogan (work more, earn more) used during his election campaign. She deviated the words and the meaning.
Her work was censured and removed.
Then the Minister of Culture decides it is not the way to be, and summons the banners to be put up again.
Now why would he do that?
Why not accept, like all of us in this part of the world, that if someone is offended and he's in power or gaining influence, we should just apologize and remove our dirty filthy thoughts from our brains.
It takes courage to make a stand on freedom of expression.
It takes audacity and bravery to make a stand on freedom of expression.
And we have none of that in the Arab world.
Posted by sarah at 23:34