Title

Art and the War in Iraq: Censorship, Patriotism, Propoganda, and Atrocity

Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Artist Statement

This paper analyzes the responses of American and European artists to the War in Iraq, specifically their treatment of issues such as: censorship, propaganda and patriotism, government leadership and ineptitude, and atrocity and torture. Nearly all the art created about the war has been negative, often blaming the United States government. In order to understand the artists’’ selection of subject matter, I analyze the role of the media in introducing the majority of images about the war; from imbedded journalists to dissenters who blogged about Abu Ghraib. The Internet has been an integral part of this phenomenon, as it has opened new possibilities of sharing information and images that did not previously exist. I compare the artistic responses to the Iraq War with the ways in which artists responded to previous armed conflicts, revealing that the current reaction has been much more subdued. The reasons for the overwhelmingly negative response to this armed conflict will be explained, in part, by the belief among artists that truth was one of the war’’s first casualties.

Location

DeRosa University Center, Room 211 A/B

Start Date

2-5-2009 9:00 AM

End Date

2-5-2009 12:30 PM

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May 2nd, 9:00 AM May 2nd, 12:30 PM

Art and the War in Iraq: Censorship, Patriotism, Propoganda, and Atrocity

DeRosa University Center, Room 211 A/B

This paper analyzes the responses of American and European artists to the War in Iraq, specifically their treatment of issues such as: censorship, propaganda and patriotism, government leadership and ineptitude, and atrocity and torture. Nearly all the art created about the war has been negative, often blaming the United States government. In order to understand the artists’’ selection of subject matter, I analyze the role of the media in introducing the majority of images about the war; from imbedded journalists to dissenters who blogged about Abu Ghraib. The Internet has been an integral part of this phenomenon, as it has opened new possibilities of sharing information and images that did not previously exist. I compare the artistic responses to the Iraq War with the ways in which artists responded to previous armed conflicts, revealing that the current reaction has been much more subdued. The reasons for the overwhelmingly negative response to this armed conflict will be explained, in part, by the belief among artists that truth was one of the war’’s first casualties.