‘Art, culture play pioneering role in transforming societies’ | Daily News

‘Art, culture play pioneering role in transforming societies’

The Citizen's Media Movement should demonstrate that integrated living is how good governance will be sustained and ingrained in citizens, National Arts and Cultural Policy of Sri Lanka Chairman, Dr. Sunil Wijesiriwardena said.

“Integrated living is possible through citizens who are culturally integrated with themselves, with other communities, with the past, the present and with the rest of the world,” he said.

Dr. Wijesiriwardena said to bring about a real change in society, there is a need to restructure the ways in which art, religion and education is pursued.

Delivering the key note speech at the 25th anniversary of the Free Media Movement (FMM) at the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute yesterday, Dr. Wijesiriwardena said renaissance was all about restructuring art, religion and education. FMM organised a "National Summit on Free Media Culture with social responsibility" with the participation of print, electronic, online media personnel, activists, policy decision makers, academics, intellectuals and civil society organizations.

He noted that a study of world history and the renaissance movements that ushered the communities from darkness to light, highlight the particular ability of art and culture, to play a pioneering role in healing and transforming societies.

Explaining the central role of media in our daily lives and the changing media environment of the past decades, he said that the media environment has changed since the inception of the Free Media Movement.

He added that journalists are a group of people who are targeted for expressing their thoughts and views.He questioned whether the journalists have got the freedom they anticipated 25 years back.

According to Dr. Wijesiriwardena, people fail to see the details of the issues and questioned when there are no good people in a country how it is possible to implement good governance.

He said that during the past 60 years, as a nation, we have only thought of legal reforms, political reforms and economic development.

He added that we have never thought about cultural renewal- that is to transform the society, change social values and collective consciousness but changing the consciousness was not possible thorough legal, political or economic reforms.

He questioned whether all our teachers, doctors, artists, students, Journalists and politicians are real and doing their job as expected.

Dr Wijesiriwardena said that we are still unable to arrive at a justifiable answer.

He said that these issues cannot be solved by changing the constitution or the structure of an institution. "However, it has to be acknowledged that state governance has not been able to do enough, nor has it done the right thing to nourish a healthy living culture among the citizens of this country," he said.

He further said that expectation of a youth today is for a luxurious life, good transportation and other material needs.“There is a void in communication between one person to another and added that they need to learn how to engage with family, nature and with themselves”, he said.

He said that teachers, artists, religious leaders and journalists have a huge responsibility in bringing a change in the society and added that they should know to maintain their professionalism. 


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