Miss Rebecca Daker

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My thesis focuses on cultural policy under New Labour and its impact on the political potency of British theatre. In the context of the history of the Arts Council and relevant governmental departments, I examine the rhetoric used by Arts Council England and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport since the late 1990s to support funding decisions, and ask to what extent the climate of arts subsidy under Blair and Brown inhibited the arts' potential for subversion and radicalism. I also look at the purposes, social and economic, that were (and continue to be) ascribed to the arts, and the attempts that have been made to evaluate the success of arts projects in fulfilling these purposes. In order to read cultural policy in a more rigorous way, I am looking to develop a theoretical framework rooted in Western Marxism and the debates on aesthetics that took place within the Frankfurt School and have been developed by later thinkers, particularly Fredric Jameson. 

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