Arts & International Affairs: Volume 3, Issue 1, Spring 2018 - Page 4

ARTS & INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS or under (hupo) the chorus (krinein). Taxidou notes that “classical Greek acting was not about pretending to be something one was not, it was about performing that role, enacting it, demonstrating it through very specific conventions like masks.” The most democratic politician would be an hupocrites who does not conflate acting with being. But she leaves us thinking of our current politics where populist actors may not respect the distance between theatricality and democratic politics. The second theme in our issue analyzes the values embodied in art and the way they circulate through art and representations. The “Multimodal” essay in this issue reports on an exercise in Participatory Action Research (PAR) that deliberated global cultural values and interests through the vehicle of the Edinburgh festivals. Unlike the Enlighten- ment belief that arts festivals will bind society together, the deliberations report on the thoughtful discussions that arts can engender and the barriers broken to address taboo topics. Guy Gotto’s brilliant films on the deliberations provide almost an ethnographic look at these discussions covering the thirty-three fellows from around the world who convened through the Institute for International Cultural Relations at the University of Edinburgh during 2017–18. Jooyoun Lee’s essay on the K-pop band “Twice” further develops the theme that, rath- er than arts bringing people together in conversation, they can equally reflect current cultural conflicts. The author examines the “Tzuyu Incident” that involved the band’s Taiwanese member whose identification as Chinese irked nationalistic sentiments in mainland China. Rather than the vision of an international society conjured up in Miia Huttunen’s essay, the Tzuyu Incident reminds us how nationalistic borders are rein- forced through arts controversies. Stuart MacDonald provides a philosophical reflection on the incompatibilities between values and cultures. He evokes an essay from Thomas J. Moore on Wittgenstein to argue that, despite cultural relativism and differences, there are many reasons to expect cultural relations to increase through a “layered pluralism” based on moral obligations, institu- tional constraints, and self-interest. There are also ways that the two themes intersect with each other. Of the two empirical “Longform” peer-reviewed essays—one on UNESCO provides the outlines of a possi- ble peace, and the other on a Korean pop band shows a contrasting view of how culture reflects current forms of (nationalistic) conflict. The two political philosophy essays in this volume provide deeper, abstract reflections. Olga Taxidou points out the limits of theatricality and the dangers of confusing theatricality with democratic leadership. Stu- art MacDonald outlines the possibilities of cultural relations in a world full of conflicting cultures. Finally, the films featured in our “Multimodal” essay report on a Participatory Action Research (PAR) exercise at the University of Edinburgh that brought thirty-three cultural leaders from around the world. PAR techniques produce knowledge through participant deliberations and praxis. The deliberations reported here are important for understanding the performative meanings of cultural representations. Contrary to the 4