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Blog Post #1

Posted on September 4, 2018

After read Zinn’s Artists in Times of War, I agreed with the idea that being professional limits human beings to working within the confines set by their profession. Nowadays, everyone is categorized into different groups by one’s profession and we are not feeling strange or uncomfortable with being sorted into categories. For example, people reckon that musicians are not supposed to be interested in math or politics because of their professions. What they should do is supposed to be only dealing with music, notes and instruments and we wouldn’t pay much attention on artists’ thoughts toward things other than art. We wouldn’t even let them express their ideas in the public about some stuff that’s outside the “boundary”, in which I mean “views that are not related to their professions. We are used to follow the rules and trends and we always believe what we read on the news or listen in the radio. Therefore, we subconsciously refuse to step out of zones set by ourselves to involve in events that are not related to our professions. As Zinn says, artists’ jobs are not only to deal with pigments or papers, but “to transcend conventional wisdom, to transcend the orthodoxy, to transcend the word of establishment, and to go beyond and escape what is handed down by the government or what is said in the media.” We all need to participate in all kinds of events which can make ourselves better and will make our country better.


  1. sbrackett

    In a sense you’re saying that artists need not only to take the role of a person who deals with “pigments and papers” but a person who also takes on the role of a journalist. Someone who is willing to think for themselves and even challenge the government and conventional wisdom.

  2. dpoleary

    I agree with you that people can be labeled by their profession but still have other interests. Also, going off of the article for example artists can still have a large affect on other topics, such as war. An great example of this influence on people could be Uncle Sam during World War II.

  3. yanylin

    Hi, I agree with your opinion that the artists’ jobs are not only to deal with pigments or papers. They can do more things as we thought. Zinn use a lot of writers to be a example to explain to us that artists can do more not just in a small area. And I agree with that at the end you mentioned we should participate in events we can make ourselves and country better. This is why human being can developed!

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