Arts

Literature doesn't need more cheerleaders

Rosemary Goring's take on the Creative Scotland debate from the Herald Saturday arts section September 22, 2012


“There is no such thing as art. There are only artists,” said E H Gombrich in The Story of Art.  It’s a dictum that the architects of Creative Scotland should have noted. Much of the firestorm that has engulfed that beleaguered institution of late might have been averted if its apparatchiks had had the wisdom and humility to appreciate that the state’s function in funding the arts is solely to disburse money to artists in the most effective and simple manner possible.

 

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Anne Fine deplores 'gritty realism' of modern children's books

by Jack Malvern and Jackie Kemp

Former Children's Laureate Anne Fine said that modern stories offered little hope for their protagonists

Once upon a time, in the spiffing 1950s, characters in children’s books enjoyed wonderful adventures after which they all lived happily ever after. By contrast, reality weighs heavily on today’s young readers, a former children’s laureate has warned.

Anne Fine said that cosy tales in which children’s characters looked forward to future adventures had been replaced by gritty stories that offered no hope for their weary protagonists.Contemporary literature is dauntingly bleak, with depressing endings that do little to inspire.

Former Childrens laureate Anne Fine reads to children from Hermitage Park School, Leith

(Colin Hattersley)

A new system for reading music

Every Good Boy Deserves Failure.   And All Cows End Gorily - or is it Eat Grass? Generations of children have struggled over mnemonics designed to help them translate five black lines and a series of dots into music. Some accomplish this feat; some - like me - remember little except these disjointed sentences. But that could soon be history, according to a charity that's introducing a music notation system to the UK from Finland that is accessible enough for the youngest children to understand. "A revolution in music education is under way," says Brian Cope, of Drake Music Scotland.

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