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Looking at how culture shaped Standing Rock — and how Standing Rock may shape art and protest

Looking at how culture shaped Standing Rock — and how Standing Rock may shape art and protest
The main dome where daily meetings are held at the Oceti Sakowin camp at Standing Rock. (Susanna Battin)

This week, the Times published a stunning collection of essays that examines how our systems of culture — from Hollywood to book publishing to the music industry — have contended with the issues of our time: Race, ethnicity, politics, social class and gender.

I'm happy to have contributed a report about art and protest at Standing Rock. Here is a taste:

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No matter what ultimately happens with the pipeline, Standing Rock has also demonstrated the vital role of culture in protest and the direction that protest might take in the future over other issues.

At its core, the Standing Rock protest has been a Native American one, with Native iconography, language, ritual and architecture. But beyond Native communities, it's also a cultural encounter that has provided fresh ways of thinking about everything from the contours of the landscape to the nature of protest.

Standing Rock, says Nato Thompson, artistic director at the New York-based arts nonprofit Creative Time, "represents an important kind of learning curve."

You can read the rest of the story here. Find the entire package at this link.

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