I screencasted myself as I wrote this, but I don’t have time to edit and publish the video tonight. You can expect that video tomorrow!
In the meantime, have a look at the question and model essay:
Some people think that the government should invest money in arts and culture, while others believe the government should spend money on more important things. Discuss both views and give your opinion.
The manner in which a nation decides how to use public funding is an often debated topic. For some, providing financial support to a nation’s arts and culture is seen as necessary; however, others feel this money is best spent elsewhere. This essay will analyse both opinions before a reasoned conclusion is reached.
As many argue, fostering a nation’s arts and culture is a wise use of government funding. There are several merits to this position. For one, financially supporting the arts can help solidify historical record and understanding. In China, for example, a tremendous amount of money is spent every year to preserve and promote the traditions of the Beijing Opera. These efforts give modern people a window into the past, and this encourages worldwide understanding of China and its history. Another benefit is the manner in which a strong arts and culture scene promotes national identity. Encouraging people to collectively identify with the historical art and culture produced in their nation establishes peace and stability in large countries like China. The advantages of this point of view are thus very clear.
Other people, however, feel such spending on arts and culture is wasteful and neglects a nation’s more pressing needs. For instance, an art gallery in my home city of Ottawa once spent over a million dollars on a large painting that displayed varying shades of white, a piece most people described as ‘dull’. Local residents found this municipal move distasteful and irresponsible given the fact that the money could have been put towards much needed social projects like helping the homeless find steady employment. It is thus understandable why many are proponents of this point of view.
The above discussion illustrates how nuances between countries make it impossible to recommend a set spending pattern for all governments. Nations are thus best to fund their arts and culture in accordance to their specific needs.