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Why it matters to make art in neglected languages
27 July @ 16:00 – 17:00
Art is usually intended to communicate to and touch a wide audience, so when language is involved, such as in poetry and classical music, multilingual artists have had the tendency towards more widely understood languages like English, French, and German. However, as the chasm between high and low art in public perception widens, the exclusion of smaller languages, especially minoritised and oppressed ones, can exacerbate negative stereotypes about the capacity of these languages towards artistic expression and sophistication. This talk will explore the ways that minoritised and neglected languages can be incorporated into certain forms of art, and through the case study of my Cantonese art song coeng⁴ noi⁶ gei² dim² zung¹ (2023), discuss the difficulties but also the importance of persisting in making art in my own language, or even other languages that may not have been taken seriously in artistic spheres.