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The politics of exclusion: political censorship and the arts-as-industry paradigm
journal contributionposted on 2004-12-01, 00:00 authored by Hilary GlowHilary Glow, Katya Johanson
In Australia from 1992 to 1999 Jeff Kennett led the Liberal state government in Victoria. Under his leadership an important vision statement for the arts was produced, and ambitious redevelopments of Victoria’s major cultural institutions were undertaken. Kennett’s ‘vision’ included reforms to Arts Victoria (the state-based arts funding agency) and a radical revision of how the arts were to be subsidised. This represented a wholesale adoption of a new policy approach which saw the arts and culture as an industry which could benefit, in particular, the development of cultural tourism for the state of Victoria. This paper argues that while the arts could be seen to have benefited from the Kennett government’s largesse, some parts of the arts sector were excluded and subjected to censorship. Based on both primary and secondary sources, we argue that in this period, the work of artists which expressed a politically dissenting view was actively discouraged.