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Between “Critique” and Propaganda: The Critical Self-Understanding of Art in the Historical Avant-Garde. The Case of Dada

Author(s): Stefan-Sebastian Maftei

Journal: Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies
ISSN 1583-0039

Volume: 9;
Issue: 27;
Start page: 219;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Dada | art | Romania | Hasidism | modernity | mostmodernity | politics | critique | ideology | propaganda

The purpose of this study is to analyze the tenets that relate to Dada’s self-understanding of art. The phenomenon Dada is notoriously difficult to describe; some critics hesitate even to use the term “movement.” Focusing on Dadaists’ reflections about the phenomenon itself, we will try to delineate a general image of the Dada in the context of the European avant-gardes of the 20-th century. We will also try to analyze the historical and political context inside which the dada phenomenon occurred. Our main focus will be on two main tenets of Dadaism: the “self-critical” feature of Dada’s self-image as it emerges during the main phases of its history, especially during its early phase, and the political commitment of Dada during its last phases of development.
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