Censorship, Religion & Offence

08 Jun
  • Nearly 25 years later, I’m a little more grown-up and the idea of banning things, especially creative works, still makes no sense to me. These days, what’s coming on the ban radar seems more ridiculous than ever before…
    I’m not sure what is more difficult to explain—that Reliance Entertainment thought Dangerous Ishq would have box-office earnings, or that anyone would want to waste bandwidth, time and storage space on the film; or that Vimeo, a favourite with indie filmmakers and known for hosting a lot of original content, was considered a threat. Meanwhile YouTube, the shady den that has everything from puppy videos to pirated films, remained unaffected because that’s where all the Bollywood trailers and song videos are put up. On the other hand, if you want to see some award-winning short films or see what’s the latest upload at the official White House channel on Vimeo, you’d learn that there’s a John Doe order preventing you from accessing the site…
    To give Sibal the benefit of doubt, maybe he was referring to the freedom enjoyed by politicians because in that case, he’s absolutely right. For instance, it’s difficult to imagine an elected representative killing time watching pornography while attending the European or American equivalent of Parliament. And that’s just a trivial example. We all know that politicians are truly free to do anything they want in this country. The laws are as flexible as flubber for them. They’re enacted inflexibly for the benefit of us humble, everyday citizens, and it is to preserve our delicate innocence that Sibal wants a draconian set of rules that will regulate the content we can access on the net.

    tags: internet freedom ban offence GoI india free_speech wp

  • Smite the Heathens, Charlie BrownAs the world grows more open, religions have turned more dogmatic and stringent. Instead of letting them evolve and adapt with modern life, the human race has turned religion into something complex and grotesque. These days religion is less about finding the meaning of life and more about competing with each other…
    Also, pretending to defend god is also pure human hubris. What the self-appointed defenders of faith are essentially saying is that not only is their god the most omnipotent, the most powerful, the king of every other god, but this very same powerful entity needs them, the average Joe – the guy who gets confined to the bed for five days because he was dumb enough to leave home without an umbrella even though it was drizzling outside-to defend them. Talk about your delusions of grandeur.tags: religion faith atheism belief offence freedom wp
  • Salman Rushdie’s PEN World Voices Lecture on Censorship : The New YorkerThe creative act requires not only freedom but also this assumption of freedom. If the creative artist worries if he will still be free tomorrow, then he will not be free today. If he is afraid of the consequences of his choice of subject or of his manner of treatment of it, then his choices will not be determined by his talent, but by fear. If we are not confident of our freedom, then we are not free…
    At its most effective, the censor’s lie actually succeeds in replacing the artist’s truth. That which is censored is thought to have deserved censorship. Boat-rocking is deplored…
    You will even find people who will give you the argument that censorship is good for artists because it challenges their imagination. This is like arguing that if you cut a man’s arms off you can praise him for learning to write with a pen held between his teeth. Censorship is not good for art, and it is even worse for artists themselves…
    Even more serious is the growing acceptance of the don’t-rock-the-boat response to those artists who do rock it, the growing agreement that censorship can be justified when certain interest groups, or genders, or faiths declare themselves affronted by a piece of work. Great art, or, let’s just say, more modestly, original art is never created in the safe middle ground, but always at the edge. Originality is dangerous. It challenges, questions, overturns assumptions, unsettles moral codes, disrespects sacred cows or other such entities. It can be shocking, or ugly, or, to use the catch-all term so beloved of the tabloid press, controversial. And if we believe in liberty, if we want the air we breathe to remain plentiful and breathable, this is the art whose right to exist we must not only defend, but celebrate. Art is not entertainment. At its very best, it’s a revolution.tags: art creativity offence salman_rushdie censorship wp

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Posted by on June 8, 2012 in Links


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