Tag Archives: democracy

The Department of Culture


The Department of Culture is looking to have a positive impact on the current Canadian federal election. You can help them by joining their facebook group and, of course, by volunteering.

We are the Department of Culture, a growing community of Canadian citizens who are artists, arts professionals and cultural workers concerned about ensuring the social and cultural health and prosperity of our nation in the face of a Federal Government that is aggressively undermining the values that define Canada.

We are you: the painters, architects, dancers, writers, actors, designers, filmmakers, sculptors, performers, photographers, ceramicists, directors, curators, musicians, archivists, fashion designers, producers, weavers, choreographers, editors, librarians . . .

WHAT WE STAND FOR:

The Department of Culture was founded on the following objectives to:

ENCOURAGE A MULTIDIMENSIONAL VISION OF CULTURE that emphasizes living interactions between the artistic, cultural, social, political and economic aspects of society.
PROMOTE A VIEW OF CITIZENSHIP in which all Canadians are active participants in the creation of culture rather than simply as passive receivers of it.
ENSURE THAT GOVERNMENTS, AGENCIES AND INSTITUTIONS ARE ACCOUNTABLE for their social and cultural agendas.
SUPPORT THE CREATIVE AGENCY OF ARTISTS to make political change through all forms of artistic production.

highlight on current research: Rethinking Media, Democracy, and Citizenship

Exciting new findings are rolling in as we conclude three years of SSHRC-funded research on “Digital Dissent”: What motivates people to blog, post movies, engage in online political activities? To what extent does frustration with corporate-owned media motivate those who engage in such practices as the MoveOn.org Bushin30Seconds contest, writing political blogs, blogging about The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and producing creative/political digital art?

We have now presented our research findings at national and international conferences and published our analyses in journals and books. Through close analysis of online productions, an online survey to 157 online author/producers, and interviews with 35 digital media artists/writers, our findings include that:

  • increased online engagement requires that we redefine what counts as political citizenship
  • online web-based practices do NOT take away from offline organizing or activism
  • digital media does impact practices and industry of journalism
  • people from all sides of the political spectrum are frustrated with media and politicians, and that this skepticism and lack of faith is a key factor in motivating online political expression
  • satire and “fake news” has extreme appeal in an era characterized by crises of truth, evidenced by the flagrant lies and abuses of media by politicians which are now daily “evidenced” through digital media practices such as remix.

For more on Rethinking Media, Democracy, and Citizenship, see our conferences papers, publications, and findings under “Projects“.