Participatory agenda in arts and culture represents a cutting-edge issue in the discourse of cultural policy. It has been seen as one which could fulfil the widening gap between the promise and failure of cultural democracy and influence democratic deficiencies that culture is facing. This paper focuses on clarification of the term participation and participatory governance in culture from its theoretical origin to its articulations and interpretations in the field of culture specifically. Methodologically, the paper builds on the analysis of literature and policy framework. In the literature analysis of the diverse conceptualisations of the participation in the field of culture, most specifically, participation in the sense of power devolution, the paper explores the repository of work by Milena Dragićević-Šešić and her contributions to the theoretical framework of the participation discussion. These contributions unravel the legacies and understandings of participation and participatory governance in culture and cultural policy from the perspective of (post)transitional context and countries in development.
The global pandemic is changing the world in significantly high speed and in many dimensions-economic, social, cultural, digital.Covid-19 certainly had a negative effect on all sectors requiring traveling and physical presence, including many arts and culture events and organisations, as well as sectors that are complementary to the culture and creative industries value chain. Despite, the global pandemic opened up new opportunities of living more among our communities, consuming more local products, reorganising our life to be more resilient, catalyzing both business and social innovations, using much more digital and online tools, including also for further increase of cultural participation and democratisation of the arts. In the last few months we have received plenty of evidences worldwide that culture does contribute to the economic and social vitality of cities across the world. This paper aims to identify the essence and key characteristics of “creative clusters” (CCs) and to offer a typology of their diverse forms of existence. It also summarises key business models and sources of external financial support for development of CCs. Finally, the paper draws key success factors for their development. The research for elaboration of this paper was done during 3-months long period (April June 2020) in collaboration with Nikoloz Nadirashvili and Creative Georgia, within the framework of the Project – “Designing a Creative Cluster Ecosystem in Georgia” under the support of UNESCO and the European Commission. The research methods used for elaboration of this paper are: desk research of documents and publications, mapping and analysis of diverse cases and targeted in-depth interviews with professionals and managers running creative clusters.
The main goal of this paper is to point out the power of the alternative and independent theatre in changing society, based on the scientific research of prof. dr Milena Dragićević – Šešić. The first part of the paper offers deliberations on the theories of reflection and shaping of Victoria de Alexander, according to which art and theatre always reflect social events. In the second part of the paper, we will analyse the work of independent theatre troupes (Dah teatar, Mim Art.) during the nineties, and their resistance to the regime of Slobodan Milošević – a significant contribution to the struggle for freedom of thought and the right of every human being to take to the streets freely. And the streets were indeed cordoned by police during the student and civil protests. This paper wants to point out the importance of the applied theatre for spreading of culture and the influence of the theatre on the audiences. The work was written based on the sociological theories of art of Victoria de Alexander, the theory of applied theatre by August Boal, and also the studies of dr Milena Dragićević Šešić: Art and Alternative, Culture of Resistance and Indian Theatre.
Along with studying the world of culture, Milena Dragićević Šešić has also dealt with reflections in the field of media theory. These two parallel lines of study, as well as long-term teaching activities in the designated areas, in my opinion, represent a paradigm, where they approach each other, conflict and fight for the dominance of two different value system sexisting today. In principle, on the side of culture and its interests and possibilities, M. D. Šešić does not fall into the trap of technophobia, but, on the other hand, does not fetishize the existing media reality. By analysing the current media scene – either theoretically or practically, the author Šešić discreetly supports culture in its struggle for a more equal status in relation to the media dictum, in the era of the rule of modern communication technologies. Without disputing the idea and practice of accelerated technical and technological progress, M. D.Šešić critically valorises the world of media, advocating a cultural value paradigm in the field of the media communication.
The paper is dedicated to the work and research of prof. dr Milena Dragićević Šešić in the field of cultural heritage and memory studies. The paper analyses the key questions, topics and problems dealt within the work of Dragićević Šešić, contextualising them in relation to the broader socio-political transitions, as well as in relation to the international academic trends in the field of cultural heritage, cultural memory and cultures of resistance. The core research interest of Dragićević Šešić is linked with the critique of ethno-national politics of memory, marginalised and dissonant layers of heritage, heritage and memory of the marginalised groups within patriarchal nationalistic models of heritage, as well as to counter-cultural memorial practices of artistic collectives, lesser known artists and civil society organisations. By analysing the work of Dragićević Šešić in the field of cultural heritage it becomes obvious that the very core of her work is a particular kind of engaged scholarship and academic activism dedicated to non-authorised heritage discourses and memory politics, triggered on the one hand by the socio-political crises of the dissolution of the former Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia, and on the other hand by the engagement with contemporary socially relevant scholarship trends.
The paper analyses Milena Dragićević Šešić’s contribution to understanding of the concepts of interculturalism and transculturalism in the theory and practice of cultural production in Yugoslavia, in the period from the 1980s to 2020, with a special emphasis on three important books that the author considers particularly representative for elaborating these concepts. The ways in which Milena Dragićević Šešić first introduces these concepts into Yugoslav theoretical and professional discussions, and then develops, applies and re-examines them, follows the developmental path of her overall theoretical, pedagogical and activist engagement over more than forty years of active work. The paper shows how the approach to the concept of multiculturalism and interculturalism in Milena Dragićević Šešić’s works has developed through the interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity of her research and how it marked her approaches to cultural production, distribution and consumption, as well as her social engagement in the turbulent times in the Balkans from the twentieth to the twenty-first century