Review of “The Economics of Cultural Policy”

This book discusses arts policy, cultural industries, heritage and tourism. Throsby unpacks his position toward the arts, his voice as the art defender is rendered mainly in these chapters. Throsby is concerned with the efficient allocation of funding for the arts, as Max Weber was. However, Weber worried that in the quest for efficiency, “the rational organization of social life was leading to a soulless, planned, bureaucratized world, where spontaneity, creativity, freedom of thought and expression were eliminated” (Hughes, Martin & Sharrock, 1995, p.12). Similarly, although Throsby might not admit it, he takes a Weberian perspective on the discussions of bureaucracy and legitimacy. Throsby implies an organized world where policymakers by acquiring special knowledge of their skills (in this case Throsby’s tools), will legitimize their authority on policymaking…

Marisol D’Andrea (2011). Book review, “The Economics of Cultural Policy” (2010) by David Throsby. International Journal of Cultural Policy,17(5), 645-647.

Letter of Vincent van Gogh to his brother Theo

My dear Theo,

Thanks for your letter, but I have had a very thin time of it these days, as my money ran out on Thursday, so it was a damnably long time till Monday noon. These four days I have lived mainly on 23 cups of coffee, with bread which I still have to pay for. It’s not your fault, it’s mine if it’s anyone’s. Because I was wild to see my pictures in frames, and I had ordered too many for my budget, seeing that the month’s rent and the charwoman also had to be paid. An even today is going to drain me dry, because I must also buy some canvas and prepare it myself…

I do not think I exaggerate about Gauguin’s portrait, nor about Gauguin himself… He has lived cheaply, yes, but he has got so ill by doing it that he can see no difference between a gay color and a dismal one…

Meantime forgive me too if I exceed my allowance; I shall work all the more, I promise you…

I  have been so hard up since Thursday that from Thursday to Monday I only had two meals; apart from those I had only bread and coffee and even that I had to drink on credit, and had to pay for today. So if you can, do not delay a minute.

A good handshake,

Ever yours, Vincent

(Arles, 1888) Letter 546 (October)

Vincent van Gogh, "Old Man in Sorrow," 1890.