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The first in a series of three lectures and debates on the changing shape of the culture industry in London, hosted by the MA Culture Industry, Centre for Cultural Studies, Goldsmiths.
Ever since Charles Landry and Franco Bianchini published The Creative City in 1995 and Richard Florida described The Rise of the Creative Class in 2002, “creativity” has been seen as the secret elixir of the contemporary city, and the driver of the modern economy. Official statistics claim that the “creative industries” employ around 6 per cent of the UK work force, and account for just over 5 per cent of the UK economy.
But what are the “creative industries”, and how creative are they? And why is it that ever since they were officially recognized in 1997, the concept of the creative industries has had to have two further official re-launches? Robert Hewison, author of Cultural Capital: The Rise and Fall of Creative Britain argues that the connection between “creativity” and “industry” is still not understood.
Robert Hewison is an independent writer, curator, journalist and cultural consultant. He has published more than twenty books in the field of 19th and 20th century British cultural history. An authority on John Ruskin, he has held chairs at Oxford, Lancaster and City Universities, and is an Associate of the think tank Demos. He has written on the arts for the Sunday Times since 1981. His latest book, on the cultural policies and politics in Britain, 1997-2012, Cultural Capital: The Rise and Fall of Creative Britain, is published by Verso.
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