Mr Minister, Mr Henri Caillavet, Mr President-Delegate, Mr Denis Clair, Ladies and Gentlemen,Dear Friends,

I am delighted to be with you today and thank you very much for
your invitation. Your Association’s Steering Committee translates its
authority and its representativeness in the public debate. Since about fifteen
of years, you have faced most of the societal issues and debates
contemporary with a high view. The values of tolerance,
dialogue and confrontation of views are at the heart of your
approach: they are also mine. I am convinced that a
shared public action cannot be based on authority alone.
I am very sensitive to the fact that you invited the Minister of Culture and
of the Communication in order to present its action, its priorities and
its vision of culture at the beginning of the 21st century.
I. Public cultural action today takes place in a context
deeply upset
We must start from an observation: globalization and the turning point
today are the two major transformations of creation and
cultural practices. The globalization of the economy and the
undeniably promote the movement of goods and services
However, it is widely recognized that the mechanisms of
force do not necessarily play in favor of cultural relations
balanced. Market profitability requirements contradict each other
with the wish to give creators the opportunity to make themselves known
and to give the public the choice of a truly diverse cultural offer.
We must be lucid. The “big house” invented by André
Malraux accompanied the changes, his skills and
areas of intervention have expanded, amplified, diversified. After the book
under Michel Guy, then architecture in the 80s, the domain
and communication is now fully
integrated into the Rue de Valois area of ministerial jurisdiction.
Today the challenges are multiple: How to respond precisely to
challenges of the digital revolution and the presence of giants like
Google? How to respond to the generational and social divide in order
promote a better shared culture? How to integrate into the
European legal context, in the global economic context?
The example of digital is, it seems to me, emblematic of the role that
we can, that we must play on behalf of this ministry and the
values it carries. Digital is of course a great opportunity
cultural development: it is a tool of creation, a tool of
heritage conservation, dissemination of cultural content to
young people in particular. It is also a means of
strengthen the social bond, allowing to weave and shape real
“communities of tastes”.
Be aware of these possibilities, ensure that the supply of these
be the guarantors of respect for the rights of the
authors and creators in the digital world.
Recognition of the dual nature of cultural property, its value
quantifiable economic, and their social and symbolic value that requires
that their circulation escapes the logic of the market
proven useful during the recent economic crisis. Faced with the crisis, the
cultural industries, their know-how, and more generally all the
activities of culture, have shown their solidity to become a pole of
and contribute to new forms of growth. We need to
however, go further to adapt or even reinvent our
regulation and intervention. This is what is sought in the
digitization actions that I have obtained the registration for the Great Loan. The
will be one of the strong axes of the action I want to lead to
the head of this department in the coming months.
We are not only confronted with developments
technology. We are also part of an environment
which goes far beyond our borders: the European area, but also the
globalization, lead us to integrate economic developments,
in many areas. I am thinking of the teaching
for example, where recent developments – notably
the application of the «Licence-Master-Doctorate» device - are carriers
a formidable European opening, a real recognition
for our students, but also for a better readability of our
Among the major developments in recent years, the
rise in the cultural policy of actors other than
the State. The latter is no longer the sole funder, the sole prescriber, nor even
the only expert by the way.
The recasting of the partnership with local authorities thus appears
essential. This is a subject I often bring up during my
with local elected officials and territorial leaders. I
I am heavily invested in preserving the jurisdiction clause
in cultural matters. But the nature of the partnership between the State and
communities must change; the time has come for a “new deal”.
This partnership should allow more coherence and
convergence between public, state and international cultural
local and regional authorities. The budgetary context requires us to:
move forward together on shared priorities, avoiding the
sprinkling and dispersion of means.
It also seems to me that the department has to work on a
adaptation of its action programmes to the reality of
each territory. In other words, prefer “the spirit of finesse” to “
the spirit of geometry» in the broad guidelines of our
cultural policies. Michel Guy, Secretary of State for Culture between 1974
and 1976, to which I just paid tribute a few weeks ago, was
a visionary by signing the “cultural charters” between the Department and
big cities: I want us to proceed with as much
of ambition and vision.
II. Ambition, I believe possible and indispensable of course, even in
period of budgetary difficulties: this is why I support
emblematic sites.
The Maison de l'Histoire de France in Paris is the project that allows us
to reconnect with the virtuous dynamic that links a future to invent, to a
which calls us to reflect. The construction of the Archives site
Pierrefitte, which will be open to the public in 2013, translates a
great ambition for our archives, these collections where the past of all rest –
celebrities as well as anonymous – these funds, where researchers meet
experienced but also «historians of Sunday» as said
Philippe Ariès, who was far from being a Sunday historian. With
66,000 square meters will be the most modern establishment in Europe.
The Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations of
Marseille - to which 30 million euro will be devoted the year
next with the landscaping of the Fort Saint-Jean and
the realization of the architectural project of Rudy Ricciotti -, translated
also a great ambition at the service of the arts, traditions
dialogue with “the other side”. The Museum’s renovation
Picasso, which will be launched in 2011, is a first museum project
order for one of the finest collections of the twentieth century. The
Philharmonie, it is a question of the will to provide Paris and its region with a place of
international level dedicated to symphonic music and
orchestras. Finally, in the field of plastic arts, the
renovation of the Palais de Tokyo – work will resume -, which
will benefit from nearly €15 million in 2011, which will consist of
in a French-style factory of 22,000 m²,
to present the best of artistic creation, talents
emerging artists, especially the stage
French and notably will help to awaken the art market.
I constantly and strongly carry each of these great projects that,
without my intervention, could have disappeared. They correspond to
my convictions and my idea of this ministry and
place of culture in the City.
I would not want to forget the “Museums Plan”, which will mobilize nearly 70
million euros on the draft finance law 2011-2013 and will concern
close to 79 establishments in the regions, creating a leverage effect in favour of
the attractiveness of the territories. I also want to mention of course the installation
HADOPI, the launch of the Carte Musique, two instruments
service of our policy in the field of musical creation.
HADOPI is an educational device, based on a response
on warning messages addressed to Internet users. It
not to “monitor and punish” but to control and ensure, in
other terms of “civilizing” the internet. As per the findings
of the Zelnik report, it is a question of promoting the development of supply
guarantee the protection of works against downloading
illegal but also to observe lawful and illicit uses, and especially
preserve the creation.
Let me pause for a moment on the House of History
of France, the subject of many controversies that should ease with
the establishment of the scientific guidance council around 20
January. In the face of a future that arouses fear, anxiety, and
future increasingly lived on the mode of impending apocalypse, where
of the immediate disaster – what François Hartog describes as
change in the “historicity regime” -it seems to me essential to
ensure that the transmission of memory benefits from a place
identified. This is not a museum, it will be a House, that is
a network open to the community of historians, open to young people
researchers, and also intended for the general public. This manifests a
true “request for history”, as the Rendez-vous
the history of Blois or the success of television or radio programs
dedicated to history. Thanks to an innovative digital space, this
house of history will map sites and museums
history throughout the national territory. It will be a
research and knowledge, but also a place of education and
transmission to the general public. This is obviously not about
to create a repository for the «national novel», or to erect a
conservatory of the past, but to open to questioning, to
dialogue, exchange, our history in the mirror of Europe and the world.
I think it is both natural and necessary for it to be able to support itself
on successful collaboration with our national museums, such as
with archives, sources of our history, heritage that belongs to the
and where the traces of great men rub shoulders
anonymous individuals whose lives are buried in the silence of the archives
and documents.
I would also like to mention the principle of action “Culture
for everyone: shared culture”. For everyone, because culture, I say
often, is the domain of the intimate. For everyone because the culture, even
when it is broadcast, is too delicate a thing to be
simply one and indivisible; it is always received in a way
different, transformed, when accepted. In this regard
let me simply quote from the speech by
André Malraux before the National Assembly on 27 October 1966:
“What is clear is that there is culture for all and that there is
culture for everyone. In one case, it is, by helping all the
to make everyone go in the same direction – in
the other case is that all those who want something to which they
have the right to have it. I say this clearly: we are trying to
culture for everyone”. These considerations are in no way unrealistic!
They were implemented by my predecessors. We must continue,
speed up. In a society sometimes fragmented, in a society where
the temptation of withdrawal, of individualism – sometimes even of the “ghetto”
cultural” - outcrop too often, we have to invent new
ways of raising awareness, mediation, cultural action, which must
take forms adapted to the diversity of the French population
of today.
“Culture for everyone” is neither a substitute for
cultural democratization, or a new version of the “All Cultural”:
it does not replace the ambition of “Culture for All”:
it feeds it, it enriches it. We must constantly reaffirm
that it in no way calls into question the achievements of 50 years of politics
cultural, but that it brings a complement, a new stage
adapted to today’s challenges.
Giving substance to “culture for everyone” will be one of the great
projects in the coming months. The link with local authorities,
with the associations, will be essential in my opinion, this is the reason for
which I ask the DRAC to propose partnerships and
agreements with communities around culture for each, or
still identify communities that can accommodate ambitious projects
such as the Centre Pompidou mobile.
III. To serve this ambition and reach the prevented audiences, I
wishes that we finally give their chance to the forgotten of equality
opportunities” in the cultural field.
I think of the sick, I think of the excluded, I think of the disabled. I
Radio Vivre FM listeners are sensitive to this
dimension, so I would like to pause for a moment. In our country, on
the issue of disability, our mindset must change, mentalities
must change. This is a prerequisite for any action
long-term. Pedagogical work is necessary to raise awareness of
cultural professionals, such as those in the community. It is a
long-term work, demanding work; we have engaged it with
Since 2001 the National Commission Culture-Handicap has been created
in close association with the representative associations of the
persons with disabilities, to define an action plan and priorities
shared. In the field of information, accessibility to places
cultural industries, substantial progress has been made
have been achieved. The reality of disability requires attention, monitoring and continuity.
My Department is doing important collaborative publishing
with the members of this commission. The first guide «culturehandicap
» for professionals of cultural structures, published
in February 2007, was reissued in 2009; a guide on Equipment
and mental disability." I believe that access to culture is the
best vector to free the mind from the «body prison» and for
release the body from the «prison of the spirit». Moreover, in terms of
Museum for All, Museum for Disabled Visitors
for everyone» rewards the best initiatives and good
practices. I know that much remains to be done for access to
people with disabilities in the audiovisual sector – I am thinking in particular of subtitling
for the deaf and hard of hearing and, above,
audiodescription for the blind and visually impaired,
but also accessibility in cinemas. This is
to this end, the CNC has asked CANAL+ to commit to
to ask producers to carry out the
subtitling of their works from the post-production phase. This is
now done and this is a remarkable advance; it is the taking of
a requirement of fairness at the heart of the
To offer everyone, in his individuality, in his singularity, in his
Humanity, a shared culture, this must be our ambition. Access to
culture is in this respect the best vector to free the spirit of the
«prison of the body» and for some release the body from «prison of
the spirit.”
You see, ladies and gentlemen, the challenges are immense, the
projects. Historian Pascal Ory recently noted
that “cultural pessimism is eternal”. That’s fair enough. Yet,
you will have understood, it is not he who animates me as minister of
Culture and Communication. To preserve our heritage, to
to serve our creation, to promote our media and industries
today is the time for inventiveness and daring. As
said Stendhal, a liberal lover of freedom: Peoples have not
the degree of freedom that their audacity conquers over fear.”
program, it is ours, it is ours today, it will still be
more in the next 18 months.
Thank you for your attention.