the chicken or the egg

endersaturday night i was doing a little catch up reading of the blogs i follow, and was excited to see a review of the new movie, ender’s game on the surly biker.  this is one of the first novels i read by orson scott card,and i remember being blown away by it at the time.  i have read many orson scott card novels since then, but none had quite the same impact.

while i was excited to hear that the movie is good, i was dismayed to learn that orson scott card is openly opposed to gay marriage, and homosexuality in general.  can i go see the movie?  can i read any more of his books?

i do my best to vote with my wallet.  when possible, i choose not to patronize companies or individuals whose views i find unacceptable.  i miss chick-fil-a, but we don’t eat there anymore.

i know it would be impossible to avoid paying all companies i disagree with. the list of companies using gmo’s. dyes, soy, artificial sweeteners, and who knows what all else, grows every day, and it would be easy to make yourself crazy trying to avoid it all.  i have no doubt many big name retailers have questionable business practices, but time and finances do not always allow me to make things myself, or buy artisan made alternatives.  but when someone like salvation army comes out and says homosexuals should be put to death, i don’t patronize them any longer.

the surly biker goes on to say that “sometimes we have to remember, as many have said, Girl-Before-A-Mirror-By-Pablo-Picasso the art does not always define the artist.”  i am not sure whether he misspoke here, but i usually ponder the issue in reverse.   does the artist define the art?

i don’t know where art would be without picasso. most art historians would consider him one of the most influential artists of the 20th century.  he is credited with co-founding cubism and co-inventing collage (that is cool right?).  he was also rumored to be an abusive husband and a serial womanizer.  not someone i would want to spend time with, yet i respect his art, as well as his creativity.

bugswagneri asked mr p if there were any composers that inspired the same conflict, and he mentioned  that wagner was very unpopular in his day. in addition to his antisemitic views, he was exiled several times for political reasons.

i guess it is safe to assume that picasso and wagner are no longer personally enjoying revenues from their artistic pursuits, and so the wallet voting probably isn’t relevant in this instance.  you get my point though?  can we separate the art from the artist?  should we?


About phrogmom

kind of eccentric artsy type raising two boys in texas.
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13 Responses to the chicken or the egg

  1. I’ve had this discussion with my Hubby, an artist, many times over the years. He says it’s vital to distance the artist from his art, me…? well, I just can’t seem to. I really think I should, but I can’t look at anything by, eg Graham Ovenden, without a certain revulsion. As for Ender’s Game, I didn’t read the books and I doubt I ever will. The film I’ll probably watch on tv. But part with my money? No. I just don’t like him personally enough to give him cash.

  2. Rose says:

    I loved Ender’s Game and the whole series, but didn’t know that about the author until just now. I had seen there was a movie coming out, but now will probably not pay money to see it. I think it is really difficult to separate the artist from the art, because isn’t the art a piece of who we are? I dunno, this is a tricky one, and one that I hope to see more comments on. Best always! Rose

  3. Angela Death says:

    Hitler was an artist, but I would never consider for a moment purchasing a piece of his art. Giving an artist your money when you don’t agree with their lifestyle choices is the equivalent of supporting those choices. I agree, I would never support someone I knew was opposed to the morals that I attempt to uphold.

  4. Pingback: the chicken or the egg | Crow Arrow, Inc.

  5. lindalla says:

    Wow – great question. I kind of relate it to celebrity endorsements and (ew) politicians. If some celebrity happens to be a philanderer, then endorses …say, enagagement rings – I’d have a hard time buying what he was selling. Just like I have a hard time buying what ANY politician says, because chances are they’ve said something opposite a while back. I have my list of companies I won’t buy from, simply because while my vote doesn’t really count for much, my dollars, or lack of them do. I enjoyed this, I’ll be back, and not just ’cause you’re my ROWmie! 🙂

    • phrogmom says:

      oh gosh celebrities! and don’t even get me started on sports stars. aren’t those guys supposed to be role models? some of them certainly aren’t worthy of emulation.

  6. goldfish says:

    I love Ender’s Game (the book–I haven’t seen the movie). When I found I find out its author was such a jerk, I found it very distressing and didn’t read the rest of the series.

  7. Very deep. And deeper thoughts after reading the comments. I think I could appreciate the art — or look at it critically and try to understand it — regardless of the artist. Now I don’t think even if I could afford a piece of art by a human rights violator I would have it in my home. But I think to look upon it and wonder is a different question. Maybe not?

  8. I DID misspeak. Didn’t even notice I reversed my artist/art in the sentence. lol. Glad someone noticed. I have since corrected it!
    It might help to know that Card will not be receiving any $$ from ticket sales, or from the film in general.
    Read below, taken from:

    “Good news for fans of Ender’s Game who don’t want their movie ticket dollars lining the pockets of notorious homophobe: They won’t. After all that controversy over author Orson Scott Card‘s extreme conservative views, a new report indicates that Card doesn’t actually stand to make any money off of Gavin Hood‘s film, and never did.

    However, devotees of Card’s story aren’t totally in the clear. Card is still profiting from sales of his original novel, which has climbed to the top of the New York Times bestseller list in advance of the film’s release. Hit the jump to learn why Card won’t rake in any of that sweet box office dough.

    According to sources who spoke with TheWrap, Card made his movie deal a decade ago and has already been paid for it. The agreement did not include any backend, so he won’t make any more from it no matter how well the film does at the box office. Moreover, the site reports, although Card gets a producing credit, he did not have any creative control over or input into the film.”

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