Benjamin Zander’s TED talk about classical music, and Rhys Southan’s essay Is art a waste of time are examples of how influential art can be to the human race. Most of society views art as something beautiful, but they do not value it as highly as they would English or math. The society around us props up english, math, and sciences because that is what is most essential to the business world. However, nothing can simulate the creativity that is absorbed from art. Rhys Southan, a freelance writer who maintains his own blog, believes a world without art would be unlivable. Southan also discusses Effective Altruism (using reason and evidence to do the most good) and how it relates to art and our everyday lives. Benjamin Zander does not have the same hardcore beliefs about art that Southan has, but he is also a believer in art and how it is essential to our everyday lives. Zander is the conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and throughout his TED talk he speaks about how art and in particular how transformational music can be. Southan’s title question “Is Art a Waste of Time?” stems from the Effective Altruists and their opinion about how art is in fact a waste of time. I disagree with that because art is part our everyday lives and it shapes the way we think. To advocate that art is a waste of time, as Effective Altruists do, shows the lack of respect that EAs have for artists like Rhys Southan and Benjamin Zander.
When Rhys Southan explains Effective Altruism, It shows the crossroads he is at between doing the most good, and spreading his love for art at the same time. From talking with multiple EAs Rhys concluded that writing a movie was not the best way for him to contribute to the world, but he cannot give writing up because it is what fuels him, and that is how art can be so inspirational. The crossroads Rhys is at stems from “the thing you most enjoy isn’t the most moral thing to do”. Rhys is fighting his love for art with the ability to do the most good for the most people possible. He also knows that art is not wasteful, and the knowledge that he has absorbed throughout his years of creating is irreplaceable. It is art that is able to bring people joy, and no matter how much good you can do, It will not be as valuable as the transformational experience that comes along with making art.
After receiving feedback it was clear that I did not have a true thesis.
To advocate that art is a waste of time, as Effective Altruists do, shows the lack of respect that EAs have for artists like Rhys Southan and Benjamin Zander and the lack of respect for the work they are doing that changes people from within.