Cultural policy

Authored by: Steven J. Tepper , Alexandre Frenette

Routledge Handbook of Cultural Sociology

Print publication date:  October  2018
Online publication date:  November  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138288621
eBook ISBN: 9781315267784
Adobe ISBN:


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Cultural policy is concerned with creating a vibrant cultural life where every citizen has access to diverse cultural expression, where artists find ample opportunities to connect to audiences, where artistic innovation is frequent and pervasive, and where art and culture serve to advance a more just and inclusive society. This chapter analyzes how sociological research, theories, and methodologies could inform cultural policy and broaden understanding of how arts and culture gets produced, distributed, and consumed by individuals and communities. The authors consider five questions that illustrate sociology’s potential contributions to a vibrant arts and culture ecosystem, including how to support and sustain (1) arts participation, (2) artists’ careers, (3) freedom of expression, (4) diverse cultural institutions, and (5) robust markets for exchange. Ultimately, cultural policy will succeed or fail based on how well it takes into account the complex social and human dynamics that shape how culture moves through the world, as well as how people move through the world with culture.

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