by Eqbal Ahmad
Artists and intellectuals are in the business of working with their minds. What distinguishes humans from animals is the manner in which people use the mind. And what distinguishes various levels of civilization, their literary and artistic achievement, economic prosperity, and moral outlook – is the extent and manner in which the resources of the mind are put to use. This is a profoundly complex subject. There are a myriad aspects to it. I shall discuss only one which I deem important. It has to do with the notion, by no means uncontested, that it is the intellectual’s special responsibility to affirm the good and just and resist the bad and unjust.
The argument, obviously a moral one, envisages a permanent, symbiosis of affirmation and resistance in artistic and intellectual.[ When] artists, poets, or intellectuals lose sight of this symbiosis, art suffers, intellect stagnates…
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