Editoriale

Culture and War: more than an aristocratic pastime

di Stefano Monti

Culture and War: more than an aristocratic pastime

In this number of Tafter Journal, we will not cover war reflections neither we will talk about the claimed relevance of culture within the overall geopolitical equilibrium. We’re rather covering reflections and stories about two of the main derivative topics that war probably will generate, and that will dominate the EU public debate after War will come to an end, and they both relate to culture in a straight or broad sense. On one hand, Casula and Cosci investigate “the logic and dynamics of the cultural work” stressing how, “In artistic worlds, more than in other fields, educational and occupational choices are often seen as following the presence of exceptional individual talent, conceived as a natural gift. This notion tends to cover the structural nature of gender inequalities in music and to present women’s marginalization within jazz worlds as a personal matter related to sexual differences, rather than a social issue to be redressed.” On the other hand, the essay of Buoncompagni is addressed understanding the contemporary international framework of “digital identity”, with a particular focus on the most vulnerable sectors of the global population, and, above all, refugees. Both of the articles reveal insights that we should all take into account, especially in the next 6-12 months: as the reading of Casula and Cosci suggests, the first element we should consider when we look at the near future is that culture has real impacts when we talk about of “practiced culture”. Everyday culture has on our lives an impact that is far stronger than institutional or red-carpet culture. Thus, when we the war will be finally finished, EU is expected to address the communitarian investment efforts to the realization of multiple everyday culture actions, despite the realization of flagship interventions. This means that, banally, the EU should invest in the creation of new and several cultural and creative industries, with or without profit purposes, enabling natural and endemic cultural growth processes. Furthermore, the reflections of Buoncompagni remind us that we should keep in mind how the most important purpose of “refugee or migrant” population management, is to realize for those people a social inclusion program. European Union, nowadays, has the opportunity to demonstrate, to its citizens as well as to the other countries, a European Model of migrants management: a model that encourages the creation of a relationship between migrants and citizens, based on the awareness that both, migrants and inhabitants, need a profound connection, the firsts for survival reasons, the latter for social development needs. In this sense, the current number of Tafter Journal tells us three different stories: the trends about “degendered” development practices within the jazz world, the need for a more profound cultural awareness in the usage of digital identity tools in order to avoid the threats deriving from incorrect usage of the same technologies we’ve built in order to protect the most fragile persons within our global society; and the need to understand how cultural research, and cultural practice, should be no longer conceived as an exercise in style. Culture is not an aristocratic pastime anymore. Culture is an industry, and in the meanwhile, it is a powerful asset with which we could and maybe should improve our conditions, empowering our identities and strengthening our capabilities. Museums and institutional culture have a key role, in times of peace. Everyday non-institutional culture comes in handy when actual problems need to be addressed.

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Reti creative

Framing the socially invisible: a transdisciplinary gender analysis of two documentary films on jazz

di Clementina Casula e Marco Cosci

The article focusses on the analysis of two documentary films by Ramon Tort: A film about kids and music. Sant Andreu Jazz Band (2012) and Andrea Motis. The silent trumpet. A story about the suc-cess of simplicity (2018). The first film allows for an analysis of the Catalan jazz band as an agency of degendered socialization, teaching school-age boys and girls how to play jazz while being part of a group and building the self-confidence also allowing them to envisage a career as professional mu-sicians; the second film, on the launching of the international career of one of the previous ‘kids of the band’, shows the relation between socialization within the band and the successful breaking of the invisible barriers hampering women’s access and career-making within occupational fields still conceived as a male dominion – as in the case of jazz. The integration of standard tools of social re-search with an audiovisual methodology allows to identify the logic and dynamics of the cultural work framing a creative space, grounding both the educational and occupational experiences con-sidered and their documentation, where the relation between jazz and gender is articulated follow-ing egalitarian principles.

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Metropolis

Connected refugees: (liquid) surveillance or computer management of migration?

di Giacomo Buoncompagni

In the time of covid-19, a lack of data can mean social invisibility, the cancellation of fundamental rights, and death. In the current political and pandemic climate, in Italy, in Europe, and other countries around the world the migration discourse still creates huge public debates and conflicts between institutions and citizens. Despite this, for some years now, there has been discussion about the addition of new digital identity systems that would promote a more effective policy of collaboration and management of the migration phenomenon. What is needed is a knowledge base on the technical and bureaucratic dangers, the difficulties of defending privacy and obtaining full and informed consent, and the challenges of identity data protection for all actors in the ecosystem. Institutions and stakeholders can use this knowledge to ensure that adequate technical and organizational safeguards are in place before digital identity systems are developed, implemented, and integrated. This is the only way to realize the benefits of trusted socio-technical systems and at the same time protect the fundamental rights of vulnerable and marginalized populations. The new challenge for institutions today is to manage, also digitally, the phenomenon of international migration. Through an in-depth analysis of the international literature, we investigated the relationship between digital infrastructure, migration management, and surveillance, and possible technological, identity, and cultural risks.

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