“The federal government should invest more money and resources in promoting Canadian culture as a tool for diplomacy, says a report released Tuesday by the Senate foreign affairs committee,” writes Ryan Patrick Jones in Tuesday’s (6/11) CBC News (Canada). “The report said ‘cultural diplomacy’—the exchange of ideas, art and culture across borders outside of official political channels—should take a central role in Canada’s relations with other countries alongside traditional considerations, such as the economy and trade. Cultural diplomacy [is] an effective way to build relationships between nations that can help Canada achieve its foreign policy goals, the report said. ‘Arts and culture can influence the perceptions, opinions and attitudes of people in other countries about Canada,’ said the committee chair, Conservative Sen. Raynell Andreychuk of Saskatchewan…. The report recommended that Global Affairs Canada spearhead a cultural diplomacy strategy focused on ‘projecting a modern image of Canada,’ identifying business opportunities for Canada’s cultural and creative industries, and strengthening international collaboration … The report … cites author Margaret Atwood, the band Arcade Fire, the acrobatic company Cirque de Soleil and many others as examples of artists who contribute to Canada’s international reputation and help to spread ‘Canadian values’ abroad.”

Posted June 18, 2019