The European society of Culture
By Henri Bartoli
Values are “General ideas”, or the “absolute realities” known a priori. They have remarkable they appear only when freedom relying, adopt them, devotes herself or gives himself to them. We do not want them if we do not. We want neither Justice nor peace, if we do not strive to build them. Without the policy, which tends to record values, morality is hypocrisy. Housed at the heart of politics, ‘place of crystallization of the decision to the scale of the historic communities that are the nations’, as well as defines it Paul Ricoeur, morality requires her she aims the realization of the most favourable conditions at birth and re-cognition of the values, and thereby contributes to the creation of man by man.
From there, the key idea of the cultural policy, not gossip moralizing or idealizing on the woes of the planet and its inhabitants, but critical discernment towards the identification of signs of the times and to their interpretation in the light of the culture and the reasons for living it is made, not contemptuous rejection of ordinary politics , but effort to penetrate by the demands of human solidarity.
Debates on keywords.
I – Dialogue
Umberto Campagnolo wanted every word of our language meaning and, if possible, univocal and linked to the “doctrine” that gradually emerged. ‘Encounters’ was the watchword of Geneva, ‘dialogue’ with the S.E.C. from birth. Campagnolo refused to see in the dialogue the best way of seeking the truth. On the contrary, he was the truth criterion allowing to define the facts. The joint agreement “is the starting point for dialogue and not its culmination.” Dialogue that is so believe in unity and in human identity (Kant called this ” respect ”), reject violence, recognize that truth and justice are both transcendent and immanent intellectually. It is not true dialogue without institutions imposing a minimum of equality and free speech, without consent in the distance.
II – Man (s) of culture
Another keyword in the language of the S.E.C. : “man of culture.” It is not allowed without a lot of reluctance by members of the french Center. First because it sounds weird in the French language, as in the English language, as well as tell you the members of the English Centre. Especially because, in the France of the 50s and 60s, there is much talk about “the concrete historic commitment” ‘intellectuals’, and more particularly of the reciprocal relationship between the intellectual of the working class and the poor need to know itself and have him the working class and the poor to think themselves. U. Campagnolo himself made the connection between “organic intellectual” as hear A. Gramsci, educator and prevalent of the consciousness of the class to which it is “connected”, and the man of culture, men of culture “not doing that express the aspirations of the peoples”. “If the French to join the expression, it is under its connotations and the distance that is established between the intellectual”, for whom culture is an instrument of practical activity product, and “man of culture” for which culture identifies all areas with what creates the human spirit.
III – Civilization of the universal
U. Campagnolo plans European civilization as stretched towards a civilization of the universal. More than once he calls it “the civilization of man. Paris, in 1953, he related to the civilization of the universal to three European sources : Greek thought, Roman law, the Judeo-Christian spirituality. This J. J. Peters opposes that history shows ample after receiving a strong pulse of its civilizing field, European culture has spread across the planet along the axis of economic expansion and political contender to a universalism which, at the time, could not be recognized by those to whom it was imposed. Jean Lacroix objects as well as, if the culture European is universal in its intent, there is danger to say such so that decolonization is at work and to the Viet Nam war adds to us, French, the war of Algeria. The father Houang adds that every people has the vocation of the universal, that it would be a serious mistake to ignore the thought of Mei Ti focusing on universal love, of Confucius exalting the universal brotherhood or Lao Tzu teacher univeselle benevolence, and say, in a very nice picture, that “the true universality should resemble a rosette which all peoples, all cultures are parts. “
Sensitive to the argument and the peril of not representing a narrow intellectual base, 1953 General Assembly adopts a resolution read by Jean Amrouche, himself Algerian man of culture, according to which the S.E.C. “intends to intensify its trade with men of culture of other civilizations for a better mutual knowledge, knowledge on which the S.E.C.”. based collaboration and friendship that are the essence of a truly human society whose culture aspires to be universal. A ’round table of civilizations”following in 1960, then an attempt to create a global Association of culture in 1963. The magazine ‘Understanding’ is full of articles on other civilizations. A solid anchor point is now acquired : culture, as “creator of values force”, according to the expression of Campagnolo, and as an expression of the deep demands of all must be put at the service of all men, and Europe, view of his role in history, assume full responsibility.
The work of humanity requires respect for what is being done with slowness and who would not try if we landed without caution : it also requires the questioned and new departures. The slow maturation of the spirit and the impatient advances of the history event won’t the same pitch. Here the need to save and pass on what any historical metamorphosis threatens to destroy and forget, and, no less intense, to be present at the construction of the world.
Twenty-eight years ago, at the 11th general meeting in Venice, Henri Janne compared the movement then waving the spirits in the Renaissance, period, he said, men of culture opposed a company struck to death by its own contradictions, have built a new, more rational value system and more human and made Europe the home of science.
Humanism today being born supports Henri Janne, is a new humanism. He founded more social life as was the case of the humanism of the 16th century on the individual but on the identity and solidarity of the species whose aim is survival and development. He opposes the “society of devices”, hearing by organizations that, once installed, become their own end, use the force open or hidden to ensure and extend their power, are in themselves their own morality, and to rule, have recourse to the method of packaging.
These words joined others already said on the eve of World War II by men who, like Emmanuel Mounier and François Perroux, had an acute awareness of the deterioration of a civilization in which, however, has said signs of a new civilization and today ‘ today, some, such as E. Morin, or a politician like Ph. Seguin, are similar.
Needs a “new Renaissance”, said E. Mounier, because, although she has shuddered the legitimate demands of the person, “with it began the individualistic decadence that must have weighed over four centuries of history”, but “before, added F. Perroux, need us a new middle ages”. “The West of Europe, wrote about him F. Perroux, will itself fully when he speak in a new and thorough all humanity what he wears in itself since the middle ages and its rebirth”, as he pleaded for “solidarity among all the sons of the homeland Earth.” Persuaded that the paths of modernity lead themselves to a “new middle ages”, that we have already entered, and we are witnessing the break-up, fossilization, or decomposition and the end of a world that can’t seem to die, and the establishment of a hybrid, uncertain, inconclusive, State where the crossing of the cap that will lead to a real new civilization is unable to be performed E. Morin estimated the time come to think and act together in the framework of a policy of civilization. As Ph. Seguin, he believes that “we must acknowledge – and quickly !.» . of what the end of the century is probably comparable to the huge transformation that marked the transition from the middle ages to the Renaissance”.
It is in this perspective of historical necessity of a second Renaissance, it seems to me that should put us to think today the cultural policy. Is civilization, everything which forms and promotes the citizen ; is culture the justifications and the values to which it consents to live his life as educator. It is through culture that a civilization is going to meet other men. When a new civilization does not recognize themselves in her culture, when a culture does not justify the civilization on, the question is intensely to the passing of the conflict, a new intelligence of the values, and the creation of new values. This is the meaning of the cultural policy.
A year ago, at the 22nd General Assembly, our senior vice-president, Arrigo Levi, suggested the addition to our work on the functions and purposes of politics of culture in general “specific themes. He listed in some national, the legacy of the great ideologies of the 19th century, the functions and the reforms of intergovernmental institutions, the relationship between European culture and the other major crops, the evolution of democratic societies, one of the major religions. Take, for example, the first of these themes.
We partially approached it when, in June 1995, when the excellent “Conference” on “men of culture before the forces of disintegration and globalization in today’s society”, held in Budapest under the aegis of the Academy of sciences of Hungary, of the Italian Institute of culture for the Hungary and the SEC, at the unanimous request of the participants from the countries of Central and Eastern Europe , we sent the men to culture a ‘call’ proclaiming the urgency of a cultural policy to deal with the threats of generalization of a universally identical and fully anonymous mass consumption culture, “real degree zero culture of creation”, according to the word of P. Ricoeur, destructive constituent values of the culture of the populations she assaults and seduced Fund , and generator of damaging identity revolts for peace. We have heard since then, in Paris, men of theater, filmmakers, editors, composers, denounce each “colonialism submitting the creation to economism, other distributors network cantonnant European production in cultural ghettos. All this is good, but incomplete. Is globalization not also positive aspects in the order of creation by the cross-fertilization of cultures, by the dissemination of the contributions of each and of others, through the knowledge and understanding that it allows ?
There is no ‘universal’ culture, but a culture ‘of’ the universal. She postulates the respect for the diversity of cultures and their dialogue. As long as universal values – those of the rights, freedoms, democracy, human development, equality among all men, of the ‘creative will’, to talk like Berdiaeff – is needed as mediating values, singularities are integrated as differences in a culture that is truly ‘of’ the universal. Globalization to sweep differences, it remains more a subjugation, the universal disappears or is more than sham.
It is becoming aware of the crisis of Europe, and by refusing the decline of its civilization than fifty years ago, the European society of culture was born, men (people ? ?) culture being invited to ‘Act in full agreement to safeguard and improve the conditions necessary for the assertion of culture’ as ‘force’ creative values, I’d rather say with Paul Ricoeur, but once more, it’s the decidedly incorrigible french who returns – “the word”, imperative, critical, doubtful, but also optative, opening wide the field of possible and the best, root of all civilization project field.
I believe in the word. I believe in the creator project and to the relentless struggle of the men against the forces of chaos, although even they succumb. What more beautiful fidelity to the momentum which has obvious fifty years that leaving the bilious their moods prophets, meet the expectations that is felt in our country of the West that something is proposed as a work to be done and no longer as a myth by concrete commitments, even if are small and limited to particular areas as long as they are experienced with rigour and tenacity, totaling to… ? ? forward men !
New Middle Age we walked, second Renaissance we need, refusal of the mystifying absolutes and the false historical determinism, search for meaning, certainty that in a crisis of civilization but also of intense mutations and fabulous progress requiring the invention of new ways to do together “is not” values only in “creating” new, commitment, making us humble workers of history. Memory requires ! Is not this the heart of our common convictions ?