Cultural Diplomacy 1930s to Cold War by dffhrtcv3


									History of US Cultural
Diplomacy to Cold War
    Diplomacy and Culture
          CULP 420
  Prof. Cynthia P. Schneider
           Thomas Jefferson
• You see I am an enthusiast on the subject of
  the arts. But it is an enthusiasm of which I am
  not ashamed, as its object is to improve the
  taste of my countrymen, to increase their
  reputation, to reconcile to them the respect of
  the world and procure them its praise.
•     Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, Paris,
  September 20, 1785
     Public Diplomacy/ Cultural
• Public Diplomacy: How a Nation
  Explains Itself to the World
• Cultural Diplomacy …the use of ideas,
  information, art and other aspects of
  culture to understand peoples and
  and countries and to foster mutual
  understanding between them.“
    Traditional and “New “ Public
• ..”the transparent means                         • Global environment,
  by which a sovereign                               not just state to
  country communicates
  with publics in other
  countries aimed at                               • Multiple actors –
  informing and influencing                          NGOs, regional
  audiences overseas for the                         actors, commercial,
  purpose of promoting the                           individual artists
  national interest and
  advancing its foreign policy                     • People to people
  goals.                                             through new media
  what_is_pd                                         and other means
                 PR vs PD
• “The missing ingredient in American public
  diplomacy between the fall of the Berlin Wall and
  the September 11th attacks was not advertising
  cleverness. It was a firm commitment by the
  American people and the American leadership
  to all the painstaking work required to build
  lasting relationships overseas and advance our
  visions of fairness and opportunity.”[i]
  [i] Richard Lugar, “Opening Statement on
  Public Diplomacy and Islam”, Senate Foreign
  Relations Committee Press Release, 27
  February 2003, p.2.
     Effective Cultural Diplomacy:
• 2 way street, sensitive to interests of host
• Increases understanding on both sides
• Offers pleasure, information or expertise in a
  spirit of exchange and mutual respect
• Provides an added dimension to the official
  presence (can help to maintain relations in
  times of political tension)
• Forms part of a long term relationship and
  cultivation of ties
• Creative, flexible, and opportunistic.
Gospel at the Cairo Sufi
     Effective Cultural Diplomacy
              Should Not:
• Try to ‘sell’ a country, region, or culture
• Be used as ‘Rapid Response’
  – “Every time there is a crisis, you open a library”
• Assume that target shares your values,
  aspirations, and assumptions
  – US Public Diplomacy’s “Shared Values” strategy
   Cultural Diplomacy in Post 9/11
• “Nor can it seriously be argued—as some have—that
  these tools of U.S. foreign policy are no longer needed
  now that the Cold War is over and America no longer
  faces major threats . . . far from being on the verge of a
  new order, the world has entered a period of great
  disorder. In facing these new dangers, a re-examination
  of old priorities is needed. Cultural diplomacy, in the
  widest sense, has increased in importance, whereas
  traditional diplomacy and military power . . . are of limited
  use in coping with most of these dangers.” Walter
  Laqueur, “Save Public Diplomacy”, Foreign Affairs,
  1994, vol.93, p.20
                 Sources of Power
• America remains the universal nation, the
  country people across the world believe should
  speak for universal values….The belief that
  America is different is its ultimate source of
  strength. If we mobilize all our awesome power
  and lose this one, we will have
  hegemony…..but will it be worth having? Fareed
  Zakaria Newsweek October 2002
               Soft Power
•   Persuasion
•   “Shape the preferences of others”
•   Lead by Example
•   “Attractive Power”
•   Need to Walk the Walk
•   Loss of soft power position through
    Vietnam War, CIA intervention in Latin
    America, Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo
  Shortcomings of Soft Power
• Too U.S. based
• Doesn’t focus enough on local context
  and adaptability
• Doesn’t recognize adequately power of
  culture and media, especially popular
Interrelationship between Soft and
             Hard Power
• Stalin, “How many divisions does the Pope
• Pope Paul influence on Poland; art exhibition
  and Solidarity
• “War on Terror” at same time as seeking to
  build understanding
• We need to worry a lot less about how to
  communicate our actions and much more about
  what our actions communicate. Admiral Mike Mullen,
  August 2009
20th   Century Diplomacy
21st Century Cultural Diplomacy
       21st   Century Diplomacy
• 24 hour news cycle; Youtube reports the news
• Facebook and Twitter help organize political
• People to people connections break
  geographical boundaries
• Information cannot be controlled by
• Private and NGO sectors important players in
  international affairs and diplomacy
Why Didn’t the CIA Know (About
     Egyptian Revolution)?
              Who Knew?
•   The Artists Knew
•   The Bloggers Knew
•   Yacoubian Building Novel and Film
•   “ We are all Khaled Said”
•   Microphone film (underground music in
 Buffalo Bill: American Achilles
• British press dubbed William Cody “this
  American Achilles of the cowboy Iliad” and
  praised the Show for its authentic
  reproduction of “the actual frontier life.”
• William Cody, Sitting Bull, Annie
   Queen Victoria and the Wild
• 1887 Queen’s Jubilee – Queen Victoria
  stands when American flag paraded on
• “All present were constrained to feel that here was an
  outward and visible sign of the extinction of that mutual
  prejudice, amounting sometimes almost to race hatred
  that had severed the two nations from the time of
  Washington and George the Third to the present day.
  We felt that the hatchet was buried at last and the Wild
  West had been at the funeral.” Bill Cody
           Public v Private
• While European countries set up state run
  entities such as Alliance Francaise, Dante
  Alighieri Society, the US depended on the
  private sector
• Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show and blackface
  Missionaries and Education
• Founding of American Universities in
  Middle East – Beirut, Cairo, Aleppo
  (secondary school)
• Began as missionary school and then
  developed into American Universities in
  second half of 19th century
  History of Cultural Diplomacy
• Originated in response to perception of
  threat – Nazi Germany’s cultural
  offensive in Latin America in 1930s
• 1936 US proposed Convention for the
  Promotion of Inter-American Cultural
  – Exchanges of students and professors
  – Closer relationship between “unofficial
    organizations which influence public opinion”
    (soft power)
  Cultural Diplomacy Timeline
• 1936 Buenos Aires Convention
• 1938 Division of Cultural Relations established within
  State, expectation of private funds
• 1946 Fulbright Act – use war surplus funds for
  academic and cultural exchanges
• 1948 Smith-Mundt Act, United States Information and
  Cultural Exchange Act, “worldwide information,
  education, cultural exchange activities”. Prohibits
  “domestic propaganda”
• 1953 USIA founded
• 1961 Edward Murrow leads USIA; officially ends
  cover for CIA officers
• 1999 USIA merged into State Department
   Key Characteristics of Buenos
         Aires Convention
• Exchanges of people to strengthen cultural and
  intellectual relations
• Exchanges should be reciprocal and should
  involve NGOs
• BUT goal was to promote better relations with
  other countries and to improve US image
• SO, culture for purpose of favorable foreign
  policy, and in response to perceived threat –
  Nazi incursion in South America
Division of Cultural Relations, DOS
• Founded in May 1938
• Response to perceived threat of spread
  of Nazism in Latin America
• Expectation of private funding
• Benefited from personal connections of
  Nelson Rockefeller
• Personal connections key to early cultural
  diplomacy; ad hoc
     Early Cultural Programs
• Nelson Rockefeller initiated exhibitions
  at MOMA of leading Latin American
• US sent visual and performing arts to
  Latin American
• High value on the arts in Latin America
• Goal to combat Nazism
   Private Philanthropic Origins
• Wealthy individuals, learned societies, and
  foundations funded education, research,
  artistic exchanges and international tours in
  1920s and 1930s
• Overlap between private and governmental
  roles; founding of private foundations
• Extended to protection of art during World
  War II
• Legacy of concept of cultural diplomacy as
  private, voluntary, self-sufficient, idealistic,
  but also associated with elite
      From News to Disney
• US government sponsored news met
  with mixed reviews from South
  Americans – too one –sided (compare to
  al Hurrah)
• Another approach Walt Disney’s tour of
  South America (see documentary El
  Grupo) to produce films such as
  Saludos Amigos
          Other Countries
• Soviet Union increasingly emphasized
  cultural diplomacy (radio broadcasts)
• Very closely linked to Soviet foreign
• French, Germans, Soviets, Italians all
  have cultural institutions by 1933
  Context for Cultural Diplomacy
• Typically in response to perceived threat, beginning
  with Buenos Aires Convention of 1936 ( response to
  Nazi threat in South America)
• Increase in cultural diplomacy in 1940s-70s in
  response to Soviet threat, struggle against communism
  for hearts and minds in Europe and Asia.
• Not just sending US culture, but supporting theirs –
  underground authors in Soviet Union
• “War Against Terror” is unusual in that hasn’t been
  accompanied by surge of cultural diplomacy
Challenges: Culture in the Service
          of Diplomacy
• How to balance values promoted through public/cultural
  diplomacy and official policy?
• Is the USG a credible messenger? “Official” vs.
  “offline” public diplomacy
• Is the role of cultural diplomacy to promote culture or to
  promote understanding of a country through culture, or
• Ambivalence in U.S. about importance, value of
• Information vs. Education
• Propaganda vs. Public Diplomacy
• What is typically “American”?
 Where Does Cultural Diplomacy
• Informal beginnings, based significantly
  on personal relations
• Ambivalence about separate entity for
  public/cultural diplomacy
• 1953 USIA founded; 1999 closed and
  folded into State
• British Council, Maison Française model
• Pros and cons of locating cultural
  diplomacy in State Department
   “Present at the Take Off..”
• Aug. 1943 DOS announces American
  Commission for the Protection and
  Salvage of Artistic and Historic
  Monuments in War Areas
  – Chaired by Justice Roberts
  – Formed after consultation with Joint Chiefs
          1946 Art Exhibits
• “American Industry Sponsors Art” -- collections
  of American corporations. Traveled to Europe
  and Egypt
• “Advancing American Art” exhibition of
  modern art purchased by State Department
• Very controversial. State sold art.
  Characteristic phenomenon – negative
  government (establishment) reaction to modern
• Truman “If that is art, I’m a Hottentot ”.
  (Opinion fortified by regular visits to National
  Gallery to see Old Masters)
Conflict Over What Is American
• Conservative voices in Congress denounce
  modern and abstract art as subversive and
  anti-American. Shouldn’t waste tax dollars on
• Advancing American Art halted, sold
• Congressman Dondero predecessor to Jesse
• Justification for CIA funding of private art
  exhibitions. Great art always has required
  enlightened patrons; rarely endorsed by
Abstract Art and American Values
• In contrast to Congressional disapproval,
  museum experts and art critics promoted
  abstract art as American -- freedom of
  expression, antithesis to Soviet Union
• Jackson Pollock -- suicidal, abusive
  alcoholic is unlikely poster child. From
  Wyoming, rugged individual, new version
  of western myth
 Artists as Standard Bearers for
• President Eisenhower, “Freedom in the
  Arts”, 25th anniversary address, MOMA,
  “As long as artists are at liberty to feel
  with high personal intensity, as long as
  our artists are free to create with
  sincerity and conviction, there will be
  healthy controversy and progress in
  art….How different is tyranny. When
  artists are made the slaves and the tools
  of the state….”
From the Artists’ Perspectives
• Some more pro-American and anti-
  communist than others
• Federation of Modern Painters and
  Sculptors –against threats to culture from
  political movements, anti-Communist
  (Rothko, Gottlieb)
• More apolitical -- de Kooning (drawing a
  nude, not Holland), Pollock
      George Kennan, 1955
• “The totalitarians recognize that only if
  they appeared outwardly to enjoy the
  confidence and enthusiasm of the artists
  could they plausibly claim to have
  created a hopeful and creditable
  civilization… and I find it sad that they
  should have come to this appreciation so
  much sooner than many of our own
      “Books are weapons”
• “..for a war of ideas can no more be won
  without books than a naval war can be won
  without ships. Books, like ships, have the
  toughest armor, the longest cruising range,
  and mount the most powerful guns.
• Through books we have come to understand
  better the kind of war we must fight and the
  kind of peace we must establish”.
     • President Franklin d. Roosevelt to W.W.
       Norton, Chairman of the Council on Books in
       Wartime, 1942
   Writers visiting Soviet Union
• “ What I sensed they got out of visiting American
  writers was, to them, our spectacular freedom to
  speak our minds. I mean, there we were, official
  representatives of the U.S – sort of the
  equivalent of their Writers Union apparatchiks –
  who had no party line at all..and who had the
  writers’ tendency to speak out on controversial
  issues… In other words, the exchanges
  enabled Soviet writers, intellectuals, students et
  al. to see that that the “free world” wasn’t just
  political cant”.
 Literature: Universal Language
• Amy Tan Joy Luck Club resonance with
  young Arab and Palestinian women
• Amy Tan, “Without deliberately delivering
  a message, it is possible through the
  serendipity of art to create something that
  resonates with people.”
• The 99 – comic books with Islamic
            CIA and Culture
•   Congress for Cultural Freedom
•   Budget for 1966 $2 million
•   Journals published Encounter
•   Involved leading universities, scholars
    and Secretaries of State (Arthur
    Schlesinger, Isaiah Berlin, George
Congress for Cultural Freedom
• Berlin 1950 – Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.,
  British historian Hugh Trevor-Roper,
  Andre Malraux, and many other
  intellectual and artistic figures from US
  and Europe
• Manifesto of freedom and liberty
• Suspicions about funding and unease
  about propagandistic tone
• June 1953 began publishing out of London
• Irving Kristol, tensions with Josselyn and co-
  editor Spender; 1966 published letter in NYT
  saying he knew nothing of “indirect
  benefaction”, in response to NYT allegations
  re: Encounter
• Challenge of intellectual journal with political
• April 1967 Ramparts discloses CIA funding
• Stephen Spender resigns, others disavow
     The Real Ambassadors
• The State Department has discovered
• It reaches folks like nothing ever has.
• Like when they feel that jazzy rhythm,
• They know we’re really with ‘em.
• That’s what we call cultural exchange.
• No commodity quite so strange
• As this thing called cultural exchange
Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie
            Dizzy Gillespie
• Dizzy Gillespie, “I sort’ve liked the idea
  of representing America, but I wasn’t
  going to apologize for the racist policies of
  America. Refused official briefing, “I’ve
  got three hundred years of briefing. I
  know what they’ve done to us, and I’m
  not making any excuses. “
Traditional Cultural Diplomacy: Jazz
         Jazz and Racism
• In France where jazz really
  appreciated, identification with African
• Could love jazz and still be very critical
  of America
• Implications of African Americans touring
  during Jim Crow era
• Impact on domestic legislation
Self-Criticism and Power of Dissent
• Twelve Angry Men Czech communist government
  intended it to show negative side of America, but
  valued by intellectuals for self-criticism
• Huckleberry Finn -- before and after the fall of
• Dizzy Gillespie “Don’t tell me what to say about
• Ozomatli on tour in Egypt in 2007
• Policy in Afghanistan towards independent media
Cultural Diplomacy Then and
Smithsonian Jazz in Egypt
 North Sea Jazz Jam Session
• Residence of US Embassy, July 2000
   Rock N’ Roll and Freedom
• Havel, “Music is the enemy of
• B-92 radio station in Belgrade playing
  Public Enemy, “Our freedom of speech is
  freedom or death-- we got to fight the
  powers that be.”
• Andras Simonyi, rock n’ roll and freedom
  in Hungary
   “Present at the Take Off..”
• Aug. 1943 DOS announces American
  Commission for the Protection and
  Salvage of Artistic and Historic
  Monuments in War Areas
  – Chaired by Justice Roberts
  – Formed after consultation with Joint Chiefs
   General Eisenhower, Dec. 29, 1943,
              Naples, Italy
 “Today we are fighting in a country which
  has contributed a great deal to our
  cultural inheritance, a country rich in
  monuments which by their creation helped
  and now in their old age illustrate the
  growth and civilization which is ours. It is
  a responsibility of higher commanders to
  determine the locations of historical
  monuments. We are bound to respect
  those monuments as far as war allows”.
                     “Stuff Happens”
 Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld,
  on the looting following the fall of Bagdad,
 “The images you are seeing on television you are
  seeing over, and over, and over, and it's the same
  picture of some person walking out of some
  building with a vase, and you see it 20 times, and
  you think, "My goodness, were there that many
  vases?" (Laughter.) "Is it possible that there were
  that many vases in the whole country?’ “ Press conference, April 11, 2003
Looted Treasures: Nazi Germany
         and Baghdad
• Chief Justice Stone         • AAMD (American
  advocates to FDR              Association of Museum
  restitution of looted art     Directors) and others
  treasures                     advocate to Pentagon to
• Argues that US Forces         protect treasures in
  should be prepared to         museums and in
  protect art upon entry        archeological sites.
  into Germany                  Advice ignored
• 1943 State forms            • One of first images from
  American Commission           Baghdad: museums
  for Protection and            looted, oil ministry
  Salvage of Artistic and       protected
  Historic Monuments in
  War Areas
Stacking the
Deck for Cultural
Decks of playing cards with
images of archeological sites, plus
texts about them, and about
appropriate behavior around them
distributed to U.S. Military – 1 deck
per 4
 On Site Historical Training for US
• Organized by U.S. Central Command
• Hosted by Dr. Zahi Hawass and
  Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities
• Held at Saqqara, home to Step Pyramid,
  oldest standing stone structure in world
• 37 attendees, from all branches of
• Recognition of historical importance of
  recognizing and preserving antiquities,
  and of economic importance of cultural
Cultural Diplomacy
Lessons of Iraq
U.S. military, Saqqara, Egypt for
training in strategic importance of
recognizing and preserving
Successful Cultural Diplomacy
• Commission worked with War Department
  to plan for occupation of Germany
• When Berlin was taken, military knew
  where to find stolen works of art
• Majority were returned to owners…after
• Very popular “blockbuster” exhibition of
  stolen masterpieces toured US
• Generated good will at home and abroad
Challenges: Culture in the Service
          of Diplomacy
• How to balance values promoted through public/cultural
  diplomacy and official policy?
• Is the USG a credible messenger? “Official” vs.
  “offline” public diplomacy
• Where does cultural diplomacy belong – in Dept. of
  State, or at arm’s length, i.e. British Council?
• Is the role of cultural diplomacy to promote culture or to
  promote understanding of a country through culture, or
• Ambivalence in U.S. about importance, value of

To top