There is an urgency for more poetry, more music and more art. There is an urgency for more dance, more theatre, more cinema, more literature, more philosophy, more humour. There is an urgency for more dialogue, more understanding, more empathy, more justice and more solidarity.
Culture does not belong to a specific social group, generation, nation or religion. It belongs to all humanity. It helps us comprehend our differences and brings us together. Books, songs, paintings, plays, films, jokes are, at their best, instruments of mass empathy: they enable us to better question ourselves, and to comprehend and feel what it is like to be someone else, connecting us to that person and, at the same time, all people. We need them to reach out of our solitudes and to build, together, a world of peace.
In the face of hatred and fear, culture is what nurtures our minds with the resolve and understanding to build that peace. But it requires effort and attention, like the field that the farmer plows. It requires a continuous recognition of its value and a lifetime commitment to its cause. This begins, where possible, in childhood, where the foundations of our lives are laid.
Over the next five weeks, we therefore turn to children, to hear about love and family both in joyful and in sad times. If children have a lot to learn from adults, so too do adults from children, who often welcome this world with more wonder and innocence than their elders.
With that in mind, we’re very proud to hand over Five One, with a virtual drum roll and a digital cheer, to some of its youngest (and without a doubt some of its best) contributors so far!
Olivier and François Holmey
London, 6 December 2015
Our selection of poetry, music and art for the five weeks of this theme is available by clicking on the tabs above or through the links below: