JK Rowling, Salman Rushdie and other prominent artists stand against illiberalism
Artists, writers and academics including JK Rowling have come together to sign an open letter condemning the rise of ‘illiberalism’ and warned that free exchange of ideas and thoughts are in danger
Artists, writers and academics have come together to sign an open letter condemning the rise of ‘illiberalism’ and warned that the free exchange of ideas and thoughts are in danger, a report in Hindustan Times said.
JK Rowling, Salman Rushdie and Marget Atwood are among the personalities to argue against ideological orthodoxy in an open letter in Harper’s magazine.
The letter came amid the debate over ‘cancel culture’ where prominent people face attack for sharing controversial opinions.
The act of canceling, also referred to as cancel culture (a variant on the term "callout culture") describes a form of boycott in which an individual (usually a celebrity) who has acted or spoken in a questionable or controversial manner is boycotted.
The forces of illiberalism are gaining strength throughout the world and have a powerful ally in Donald Trump, who represents a real threat to democracy, the letter said.
But the resistance must not be allowed to harden into its own brand of dogma or coercion which right-wing demagogues are already exploiting. The democratic inclusion we want can be achieved only if we speak out against the intolerant climate that has set in on all sides, the letter added.
The letter also criticised “swift and severe retribution” dealt out to any perceived wrongs. It condemned an intolerance of opposing views, a vogue of public shaming and ostracism.
The way to defeat bad ideas is by exposure, argument, and persuasion, not by trying to silence or wish them away, the letter said.
Published: 09 Jul 2020, 11:08 AM