Friday, February 29, 2008

Can music change the world?

While this article may not be the most relevant to our discussions, it really spoke to me. These young, twenty-something people are singing out against their society's traditions and attempting to make a change in their home. The Somalian music group has been displaced by the fighting and violence in their home country, and have been living in Kenya, some for over a decade. Singer Jamila Jamma says in the article "We are not happy with what has been happening back home, in fact we have recorded a thought-provoking song that we hope will bring our leaders back to our senses." While singing out against the war in Somalia, the group, "Waayah Cusub," is also crossing serious cultural boundaries to alert the people in their communities about social problems like AIDS. (You can listen to some Waayah Cusub songs on the BBC site)
This article raised some questions for me about the relevance of art and the responsibilities of artists when it comes to issues like AIDS, war and human rights all over the world. There has been a long standing tradition of using literature, art and music to speak out against injustices, and popular artists have a large audience to make their claims to. The question, I guess, is how much do you think the arts have an impact on society and global issues? Is there a responsibility among artists to address issues going on in the world today? How much change can they actually create?


Aditi said...

The arts have always been a great way to raise awareness. So many famous musicians have had concerts the profits of which have been given to a charitable organization. If anyone can use their influence or popularity to raise money for a worthy cause then that is their responsibility no matter what field they come from.

Lusmaia212 said...

Self expression through the arts is pivotal for those who can't articulate their voice. Being able to have control of a painting, or a drum may give some purpose for those who have no control of their life, or their future.