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Issue task: funding arts during economic crisis



 
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Issue task: funding arts during economic crisis #1 (permalink) Thu Jan 26, 2017 20:40 pm   Issue task: funding arts during economic crisis
 

Hello there,

I timed myself this time. It is real to accomplish! I wrote 400 words, with some more practice I finally can achieve 500 words essay for GRE. Could you please comment on my essay? I am practicing topic development.

Claim: Nations should suspend government funding for the arts when significant numbers of their citizens are hungry or unemployed.

Reason: It is inappropriate—and, perhaps, even cruel—to use public resources to fund the arts when people's basic needs are not being met.


Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim and the reason on which that claim is based.

Throughout the recorded history, various genres of arts have been playing a paramount importance in human lives: literature tells people stories about heroic figures, paintings and drawings depict the historical events passing them to the subsequent generations, music helps people to endure and get through tough times. At the same time, a society that is incapable of making their living cannot produce any forms of arts on the empty stomach. Given the importance of both domains, I maintain that with shrewd cost management and prudent prioritizing governments can address both needs.

At first sight, arts seem unimportant and do not have any value except for recreation and entertainment. Yet according to Clifford Geertz, culture is what caused our ancestors to develop to Homo Sapiens, and arts are one of the most pivotal part of culture. Culture’s symbolic nature gives people the material that helps them to adapt and survive, and it should not be underestimated and has to be preserved. However, it might be said that arts in the form of folklore have managed to survive without funding. Indeed, it is true, but it should be noted that if any kind of system, be it a culture or a society, is put to its critical point, there is a great chance that it disappear.

Second, if we consider a government’s budget structure we can see finance goes for different purposes at different proportions. The lion share of public expenditures goes for maintaining the social order in the form of jobs, policing, and public infrastructure. So, except for the situations of total destitution, governments are capable of allocating some finance for developing and supporting arts. Given the importance of arts, it seems reasonable and desirable.

Last but not least, with proper financing, arts can become the source of revenues for the government. Take for instance handcrafts. Many developing countries like Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, to name but a few, do have a big inflow of foreign investments due to their globally well-known products like textile and furniture. In other words, investment in arts can solve the pressing issues like reducing joblessness, feeding vulnerable groups of population.

Both aspects of human lives, that is the need for cultural symbols as well as subsistence needs, are important and has to be of governments’ priority. With proper cost management and prudent planning, governments can satisfy population’s needs for security and development.
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Trololo12
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Joined: 28 Mar 2012
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Re: Issue task: funding arts during economic crisis #2 (permalink) Fri Jan 27, 2017 15:58 pm   Re: Issue task: funding arts during economic crisis
 

Hi Trololo, that's great that you were able to write this much in the allotted time. Your writing is good and addresses the topic correctly, but to me it seemed pretty superficial and without much depth. I think one problem is your lack of specific examples. Apart from you handicrafts section, there really aren't any examples, just statements, which are not really justified with much evidence. I think it might be easier for you to write a more compelling essay if you favor one side or the other a little more strongly. Here you actually deny the claim for the most part, at least all your paragraphs deny it, but you do not state your position very strongly and it ends up sounding a little wishy-washy to me.

Trololo12 wrote:
Hello there,

I timed myself this time. It is real to accomplish! I wrote 400 words, with some more practice I finally can achieve 500 words essay for GRE. Could you please comment on my essay? I am practicing topic development.

Claim: Nations should suspend government funding for the arts when significant numbers of their citizens are hungry or unemployed.

Reason: It is inappropriate—and, perhaps, even cruel—to use public resources to fund the arts when people's basic needs are not being met.


Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim and the reason on which that claim is based.

Throughout the recorded history, various genres of arts have been playing a paramount importance {you don't "play an importance" - maybe play an important role or have had importance} in human lives: literature tells people stories about heroic figures, paintings and drawings depict the historical events passing them to the subsequent generations, music helps people to endure and get through tough times. At the same time, a society [whose people are] incapable of making their living {the society making a living sounded odd} cannot produce any forms of arts on the empty stomach. {the tone of this seemed a little off - maybe "... arts while they are constantly struggling just to get enough food to survive"} Given the importance of both domains, I maintain that with shrewd cost management and prudent prioritizing[,] governments can address both needs.

At first sight, arts seem unimportant and do not have any value except for recreation and entertainment. Yet according to Clifford Geertz, {maybe explain who this person is? } culture is what caused our ancestors to develop [in]to Homo Sapiens, and arts are one of the most pivotal part[s ] of culture. Culture’s symbolic nature gives people the material that helps them to adapt and survive, {this sentence seems vague - what exactly is culture's symbolic nature and why does it help them survive?} and it should not be underestimated and has to be preserved. However, it might be [argued] that arts in the form of folklore have managed to survive without funding. Indeed, [this] is true, but it should be noted that if any kind of system, be it a culture or a society, is [brought] {you don't really "put to a point"} to its critical point, there is a great chance that it [will] disappear. {This whole paragraph seemed vague and unclear to me. I think it cries out for some specific examples showing why culture - specifically cultural art, can help a society adapt and survive. And your last sentence is vague too - why exactly does art need funding now while it apparently did not in the past?}

Second, if we consider a government’s budget structure we can see finance goes for different purposes at {"in" is better here} different proportions. The lion['s] share of public expenditures goes for maintaining the social order in the form of jobs, policing, and public infrastructure. So, except for the situations of total destitution, governments are capable of allocating some finance for developing and supporting arts. Given the importance of arts, [this] seems reasonable and desirable. {at what point does "significant number of citizens hungry or unemployed" become "total destitution"? Maybe make the contrast more clear}

Last but not least, with proper financing, arts can become [a ] {hopefully they are not "the" source - taxes too, right? ;) } source of revenues for the government. Take for instance handcrafts. Many developing countries like Thailand, Cambodia, [and] Indonesia, to name but a few, do have a big inflow of foreign investments due to their globally well-known products like textile[s ] and furniture. In other words, investment in arts can solve the pressing issues like reducing joblessness, [and] feeding vulnerable groups of population.

Both aspects of human lives, that is the need for cultural symbols as well as subsistence needs, are important and ha[ve] to be of governments’ priority. With proper cost management and prudent planning, governments can satisfy [a ]population’s needs for [both] security and development. {I don't think "development" is really synonymous with arts funding}
Luschen
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