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The Author : Charlotte Groult


After studying public policy at Sciences Po in Paris and literature at the University of Melbourne, Charlotte Groult is now editor for the Maison des sciences de l’homme in Paris. She is dedicated in particular to the publication of books combining anthropology, photography and cinema, including Vivre avec les dieux. Sur le terrain de l’anthropologie visuelle, by Marc Augé, Jean-Paul Colleyn, Catherine De Clippel and Jean-Pierre Dozon. She also edits two academic journals in the humanities and social sciences published in English (Social Science Information, Violence: An International Journal). Charlotte Groult, as former officer for books and ideas for the French Embassy in Canada, lived in Toronto for nearly a year and a half between 2016 and 2017. She has also worked with publishing houses in France, as well as for several months in the editorial department of an American literary magazine based in New York, The Paris Review.

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Investigation by Charlotte Groult
Kent Monkman, The Scream, 2017, 84” x 126”, Acrylic on Canvas
20 December 2018

The price of cultural appropriation

Investigation by Charlotte Groult
Kent Monkman, The Scream, 2017, 84” x 126”, Acrylic on Canvas

“I don’t believe in cultural appropriation. I’d go so far as to say that there should even be an award for doing so: the Appropriation Prize,1” is how Hal Niedzviecki opened his editorial for Write magazine, published in spring 2017 by the Writer’s Union of Canada. In only a few days, his statements sparked debate in the country’s press, and even beyond the Canadian literary scene. Cited and re-tweeted to exhaustion, the expression “cultural appropriation” is governed by a fluctuating and disturbing logic steeped in principles of property and legitimacy in art, and of imagination and free creativity. Critics of the concept believe that it agitates the spectrum of censorship and political correctness. And yet, because it inspires these very divisions, cultural appropriation also highlights the tensions running through a given society.

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