Relationship between the Artist and Society

Topics: John Steinbeck, Dust Bowl, The Grapes of Wrath Pages: 4 (1238 words) Published: October 11, 2013

The Relationship Between the Artist and Society
The relationship held by society and the artist is universal, applying mathematically, in literature, and nature. In physics, for every action there is a reaction. The apple does not fall far from the tree, for we often find refuge in our animal instincts. Throughout evolution, figures may have changed, but our fight or flight instincts are still remain strong. Within society, when a person is being ‘attacked,’ be it words or fists, they will fight back, protecting themselves. This is how artist react to society: two lions on the prowl, lunging at one another to see who will prevail in effectiveness and strength. In society, this battle has yet to be won. However, H.L. Mencken creates an elaborate false hatred between society and the artist, instigating by creating problems that are not really there. Neither side is out to get the other.

Trendsetting artists like the narrator in Virginia Woolf’s, A Room of One’s Own, who break societies shell do not mix well with the close-mindedness of society. Society’s mind is a tunnel, never open for other ideas or modifications. There is only one-way in and one-way out: one path to travel. There are no other possible routes or changes to the mindset. The idea of someone, an artist or more specifically in the time period a female artist, chipping away through the tunnel, breaking through walls allowing other lights and spectrums in is terrifying. Though society fights back, restricting the creative, innovative souls, they can never gain complete control, for there are too many in the shadows of oppression breaking the mold. It is a losing battle. Society will be forever chained by the tunnel vision: a horse with blinders on, blocking views of all this except the path ahead, leading a parade of people through an ignorant lifestyle, for we have never fully seen what lies beyond the barriers. The life of an artist is difficult whether male or female. The tunnel will never...

References: Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Viking, 1939. Print.
Woolf, Virginia. A Room of One 's Own. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1989. Print.
Mumford and Sons. Dust Bowl Dance. N.d. CD.
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