Tuesday May 16, 2017
Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Tuesday May 16, 2017
Cultural appropriation: at its base, it’s all about money
The debate over cultural appropriation is complicated. At one level it is about the legitimacy of telling the stories of others. At base, it is about money.
It became front-page recently when the editor of a little-known literary magazine created a firestorm by daring to support the idea.
“Anyone anywhere should be encouraged to imagine other peoples, other cultures, other identities,” Hal Niedzviecki said in Write, the journal of the Writers’ Union of Canada. He went on to suggest, tongue-in-cheek, that an “appropriation prize” be created for writers who managed to accomplish this task.
For that, he was denounced by his employer and a number of authors. He quickly resigned.
Those living happily outside the hothouse of Canadian literature might be surprised that this is even an issue. By definition, fiction writers write fiction. In that sense, everything is borrowed. (Continued: Hamilton Spectator)