It’s baffling how American partisanship has brought us to a place where a man who’s famous for being on TV could possibly be in charge of the country that is largely responsible for leading the growth of global industrialism, capitalism and militarism.
Does the political rise of Donald Trump accurately reflect the core thoughts and values of a majority of American citizens, or the whacked-out ramblings of a vocal but statistically irrelevant margin? Will American voters be able to separate Trump’s fame and “brand value” from the actual skills and qualities needed to lead a nation? Sometimes it’s hard to distinguish style from substance.
This week, CBC News obtained a copy of a Master thesis by Dimitry Soudas, former communications director to Stephen Harper. Journalist Elizabeth Thompson relates Soudas’ observation that television undermines political dialogue by simplifying complex topics and issues into sound bytes. “Style has come to trump substance,” Soudas writes. Hah.
This edition of #CdnCult focuses on the relationship between theatre and politics. What do artists need to survive for when practice and politics are deeply intertwined? Toronto writer and director Susanna Fournier grapples with the challenges of having collaborators interested in her passion, not her politics, and not seeing the link between the two. Playwright and director Arthur Milner observes how deeply political Canadian theatre was and no longer is. And newly-minted MT Space AD Pam Patel explores how even well-meaning artists can become complicit in gentrification.
Can artists compartmentalize their complex selves and still authentically create and flourish? Will voters overcome their innate sexism and vote Clinton? Or will Clinton cost Jill Stein the election sixteen years after Al Gore cost Ralph Nader the Presidency? All of this is hard.
Adrienne Wong and Michael Wheeler