Caroline Turner
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Jen Webb
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The artist as cultural and political activist
in Art and human rights
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Artists who engage as cultural activists use their creative skills and vision in an effort to achieve political change and social justice by mobilising people through emotional engagement; those who engage more directly in politics may also involve themselves in mounting political demonstrations, circulating petitions, campaigning, working for a political party, or actively organising community events to achieve legislative or policy changes. This chapter presents case studies of Thai artist and political activist Vasan Sitthiket, Indonesian-born cultural activist Dadang Christanto, and Malaysian artist Wong Hoy Cheong, who operates in both modes. All three artists engage in their artwork and in their social or political lives to bring about positive changes in their communities.

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Art and human rights

Contemporary Asian contexts


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