With this lecture I intend to put in focus, the neglected, erased, and obliterated class analysis of art. The European discourse in the field of humanities has had an impressive development in the second half of the 20th and the first decades of the 21st century, so we always draw from our sleeve good old formal analysis, semiotic and institutional analyses, then racial analysis, and of course also gender analysis; therefore the absence of class analyses of, let’s say, contemporary dance or high education in theatre directing is really striking. Moreover, it is all happening in the context of cultural workers and students of arts and humanities, in whose lives the class issue and related poverty constitute one of the biggest existential problems, as well as career obstacles. It is not that these topics are never discussed; however, when they are, they are observed as problems of precarity.
I will ponder that notion, precariat and its dusty historical counterpart the proletariat. Has the time when it made sense to speak about proletariat passed, since the concept of precariat better describes the current situation? Moreover, does the notion of the precariat suggest that the concept of the class is an obsolete category altogether? How can it be obsolete, when we still live in a capitalist society, whose class problems of expropriation and exploitation have never been resolved? They haven’t, but today they are different. How exactly?
I will use the framework of this lecture as an opportunity to open a discussion with the audience about daily life problems of the students of artistic faculties, artists, and cultural workers, who don’t come from tycoons’ and other rich families, who must keep two jobs to just survive and thus struggle with collecting ECTS credit points, who forge papers needed for visa, who speak broken English, whose dancing bodies are not thoroughly and highly trained, who… [continue the sequence]