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Creativity, Freedom and the Crash: how the concept of creativity was used as a bulwark against communism during the Cold War, and as a means to reconcile individuals to neoliberalism prior to the Great Recession

Ward, S.C.

Creativity, Freedom and the Crash: how the concept of creativity was used as a bulwark against communism during the Cold War, and as a means to reconcile individuals to neoliberalism prior to the Great Recession Thumbnail


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Abstract

At first glance, creativity in the classroom and global capitalism have little in common, yet scratch beneath the surface of ‘creativity’ and we find a discourse of economic and cultural freedom that was used as a bulwark against communism during the Cold War, and more recently to reconcile individuals to neoliberalism in the post-Cold War era. This discourse of economic and cultural freedom is evident in various UK government reports and political speeches from the late twentieth century onwards, in which politicians aligned creativity with personal autonomy and cautioned against government interference in the operation of the free market (see for example Blair, 1998; Morris, 2003). The UK’s fascination with creativity at the dawn of the new millennium was part of a worldwide interest in innovation and free enterprise. In the words of the Director-General of UNESCO, ‘Creativity is our hope’ (UNESCO, 2006: 5), and faith in creativity as a means to equip individuals for life under global capitalism is a striking feature of contemporary international debate. The aim of this paper is to explore the genesis of the account of creativity as economic and cultural freedom, and to consider how this discourse informed education policy prior to the ‘Great Recession’ (Streeck, 2011), and how the discourse of employability may come to replace it.

Citation

Ward, S. (2013). Creativity, Freedom and the Crash: how the concept of creativity was used as a bulwark against communism during the Cold War, and as a means to reconcile individuals to neoliberalism prior to the Great Recession. Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, 11(3), 110-126

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jul 1, 2013
Deposit Date Jan 10, 2013
Publicly Available Date Apr 10, 2015
Journal Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies
Print ISSN 2051-0969
Electronic ISSN 1740-2743
Publisher Institute for Education Policy Studies
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 11
Issue 3
Pages 110-126
Keywords Creativity, Neoliberalism, Employability.
Publisher URL http://www.jceps.com/archives/439

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