Not long ago I was asked to write down my statements on what art is and what it contributes to resistance in my PO936 ‘Resistance in Practice’ module.
Of course, as one of the few top students in this module (sarcasm), I demonstrated my resistance in practice and chose not to contribute any of my statements at all.
The truth is, I struggled to come up with a statement on art even after hours and hours of thinking.
Art is…an expression of self.
No, no, that’s too easy
As a child whose parents studied fine arts, whose dad is an art teacher, these statements are too simple; I need to come up with a better definition for art
And then art can be part of humanities as well…
Can I actually relate some of the themes from the law and humanities to contribute my definition of art?
And just when I was working on my law and humanities essay, I came across this lovely piece of reading from the Yale Journal of Law and Humanities.
Joushua Decter’s ‘Inside and Outside Sovereignty, Outside and Inside the Law’.
Not only does he quote my favorite idol Giorgio Agamben to begin with as his introduction, what he wrote was exactly what I wanted to say about art. His way of expressing sovereignty through a poem linking with law as well as art have been simply beautiful.
“Art is governed by the same laws it seeks to break.
And yet we might say that art is always endeavoring to be at once inside and outside ‘the law.’
If art breaks these laws, it breaks itself.
Which can result in powerful art…
We are the order we seek to disorder.
We are our incomplete sovereignty.
Decter, Joshua (2015) “Inside and Outside Sovereignty, Outside and Inside the Law,” Yale Journal of Law & the Humanities: Vol. 27: Iss. 2, Article 8.
Available at: h p://digitalcommons.law.yale.edu/yjlh/vol27/iss2/8