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Yesterday, we had a discussion about post-feminism in one of my university seminars. First of all, there is no general definition of the term post-feminism. Nevertheless, most researchers would agree that post-feminism is characterized by a declining interest in feminism. Especially young women do not call themselves feminists because they think they are equal. They think that they have the same rights and can make the same choices as men. For them, feminists are radical women who only complain and want to have a better life than men.

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Post-Truth Politics and Post-Factual News

These days, it is nearly impossible to not stumble upon the buzz words “post-factual news” and “post-truth politics.”

Many journalists, scientists and politicians claim that we live in a time where emotions are more important than facts and reasonable arguments. For me, this view is very dangerous. It gives people the permission to end any kind of discussion. It keeps progressive programs and policies on hold. For instance, there are many people who still think that women should not be emancipated because they have the feeling that women are too weak for powerful positions. And some people feel afraid of foreigners because they have heard some worrying stories about them. So, they think that it is better if all foreigners stay far away. Interestingly, these people can only find positive “natural-given” attributes for their own groups because their own groups are the best ones.

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Hannah Arendt & the University of Heidelberg

2014-08 Graffiti Patrik Wolters alias BeneR1 im Team mit Kevin Lasner alias koarts, Hannah Arendt Niemand hat das Recht zu gehorchen, Geburtshaus Lindener Marktplatz 2 Ecke Falkenstraße in Hannover-Linden-Mitte

I completed my bachelor degree from the University of Heidelberg in the field of German Literature, Political Science and Anthropology. Many famous intellectuals studied in Heidelberg. One of them is the most well-known female political theorist: Hannah Arendt.

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What is an artwork? Who is an artist?

Yesterday, I went to an art gallery in Heidelberg. Its current exhibition is called “It is only a state of mind”. The presented artworks play with reality, subjectivity and the subconscious part of the mind.

While I was starring at the different artworks, my mind responded to some of them. I was wondering about the definition of an artwork. What is the difference between an artwork and an artefact? And from what moment on, is a human being called artist?

Scientists have developed three theories to answer these questions. The first group argues that an artwork is aesthetically superior to usual objects. Therefore, the aesthetic theory claims that every human can recognize an artwork because it has certain qualities of visual attractiveness.

The second group says that an artwork can always be interpreted. It suits into an art-historical tradition and carries a system of ideas and meanings. Thus, the interpretive theory was born.

The last group argues that an object becomes an artwork if there is an institution behind it, e.g. art spaces, art academies, critics, collectors … According to the institutional theory, everything could become art if there are people who make it so.

Critics became an important tool to show what an artwork is and how good it is made. I only wonder why we tend to speak about superficial qualities when we talk about art. How did the actor play in a movie? How do the words rhyme? How does the instrument sound like?
Should an artwork not reflect our emotions?

We like them because they speak directly to our heart and soul. If we can hear its message or not depends simply on our current state of mind.

When I was a kid, I could not understand why jazz music was cool. Now, I like it, because its spontaneity reminds me of my own unpredictable life. The singers express what I feel, but cannot say.
For a long time, I thought that going to a gallery was a waste of time. But one exhibition changed my opinion when I was 19. It showed Frida Kahlo’s artwork. Suddenly, I could find my own suffering in the paintings of a Mexican woman who was leading a completely different life than me.
I do not think that the three art theories are completely wrong but we humans are subjective. We respond to something if it has a personal meaning for us.

Therefore, I think that an artwork can be everything that carries a meaning, a message for us. And an artist can be every person, who can communicate this meaning in any kind of way.

Humanity lives from ideas

It is not about how many ideas you have. It is your task to make some of them happen.
Being creative does not mean that you have to become a painter, an actress or a dancer. You can be creative in everything you do. Ideas are frequently coming to our minds. We should not ignore them.
Write them down and think about them. Some of them can come alive. They only need time, patience and helping hands.
Humanity wants to evolve. To save our planet, we have to create a global world where a balanced and peaceful life is possible for everyone. Your thoughts will tell you what you can do to contribute your part.
Listen to your thoughts. Realize your ideas. Make things happen.