Mr President of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council, Mr Ombudsman of the Republic, Mr Jean-Paul Delevoye, Mr President of the public establishment of La Villette, Mr Jacques Martial, Ladies and Gentlemen,Dear Friends,

The great writer Edouard Glissant, who said I write in the presence of
languages of the world,” he said. I hope that we
Let us take a moment of silence to pay tribute to him. Let us pay tribute
tribute to Edouard Glissant, it is to greet a life of consecrated reflection
to a large company: trying to name creole. A reflection that
has evolved from the time he was close to Frantz Fanon and
engaged in the anti-colonialist fight, since the time of his thesis where he
adhered to the notion of negritude.

The French post-colonial thinker went further: he made himself the
thinker of globalization and polyphony. Sliding gave us
weapons to abstain from simplifications, to avoid that the
creolization and miscegenation, by being dried up as messages
are understood only as advertising slogans. The
Creolization is not United Colors of Benetton. With the notions of
«Everyone», from «globality», he tries to understand the identities in
network, it tries to put the «periphery» at the center of our identities

Edouard Glissant is the splendid advocate of a root identity that does not kill
not around it, but on the contrary extends branches to others».

The “poetics of the diverse”, the one I was thinking of when I was talking about
Culture for everyone – and I realize today that the
semantic innovations always carry equivocal and
misunderstandings and cannot be made in a moment of doubt,
questions - it is also a way to reflect on the issues of culture
the globalized world of the 21st century. I do not believe in the
cultural despair, I don’t believe in the prophecies of the bug made in
France, I do not believe in the exhaustion of our creation in the face of a culture
global mainstream for all. That’s why I’m here with you,
that’s why you’re here today. How to despair
a country that multiplies co-productions and guarantees the vitality of the second
world cinema? How to despair of a country that makes known to
around the world its street art companies, like Royal de
Luxury? How to despair of a country that offers in the first part of
evening, on the audiovisual public service, operas? How
despair of a country that makes known on its stages Tata Milouda,
Slam phenomenon at age 60, revealed by Grand Corps?

Because the world is changing, because the cultural practices of the French
cultural democratization must be constantly rethought and
adapted. Your numerous presence today testifies to the timeliness of
the need to answer this question. That’s why I wanted to
give voice to cultural actors, to those who produce, create and
spread art and creation today.

In this, I am faithful to my method: that of dialogue, of listening, of
consultation to establish a shared diagnosis. [ if applicable: The
confrontation, the din, the obstruction, it’s not dialogue]. The
respectful controversy, mutual listening, dialogue is the idea that
I make art and artists. As Milan Kundera says, Culture
is only a long question (...) culture is the guardian of the
memory”. You are the custodians of this memory; this memory
I make it my own, giving you the floor today.

Since the early 1970s, the
Communication regularly conducts the Cultural Practices survey. The
publication of the results of the 20081 survey, more than ten years after the
1997, was an opportunity to take stock of the profound changes
conditions of access to culture. I know that
this survey cannot claim completeness, I know that its results
have been challenged; nevertheless, it provides benchmarks and testifies to the
The road ahead remains.

Allow me to quote some figures. During the period 1997-1997
2008, daily reading of paid newspapers continued to decline, from
even as the amount of books read out of school
or professional. For several decades, each new
generation reaches adulthood with a level of commitment to the
print world lower than the previous one. The erosion of readers
daily newspapers and strong book readers is also accompanied
an aging readership. How to be satisfied that 33% of
skilled workers, 29% employed, 38% of farmers, 12% of
intermediate occupations, report having never been to a
cultural establishment during the year, against 5% of managers
higher? Can we be satisfied that during the year, 72% of
French over 15 never made it into a library,
58% of them in an exhibition, 51% in a dedicated venue
to the live show?

The subject is not simply limited to France. How to answer this
The European Union budget, which has been allocated to the
to culture represents 400 million euros over 7 years, the film’s budget

At my initiative, as you know, the Ministry has been engaged for several
months in a work of reflection on cultural democratization. I have
I wanted to open the dialogue, I gave a large place to those who do the
culture on the ground, I wanted to listen to you. This
forum, as you know, is a continuation of the 25 regional forums
that have been held locally since September 2010. They have
several hundred actors from all walks of life: structures
cultural associations, popular education federations, artists,
researchers, local authorities.
I intend to follow in the footsteps of my predecessors who
all working in various forms for development
cultural. Even before the creation of the department, in the years since,
how not to mention the action of Jeanne Laurent, master builder
of the first theatrical decentralization. This founding act made it possible to
the first time the locations of prestigious companies in
residence in different cities of France. For the first time we played
every evening in the major cities concerned, like the theatre
Marseille daily newspaper, so well named at the time.

Cultural democratization is the history of this Department. It is André
Malraux and the adventure of the Houses of Culture, where he saw a
network of cathedrals of Culture, It is Jacques Duhamel, who had this
extraordinary phrase Culture is what must be added to a day of
work to make it a day of life»

It is Michel Guy who allows with the Charters of cultural development
to involve large cities and local authorities more strongly.
Michel Guy for whom the training capacity of the works is not enough:
The accumulation of knowledge only makes individuals similar.
It is the stimulation of will that allows the blossoming of difference
[…] through an extremely extensive decentralization and by the school,
associations, radio and television”.

It is the creation of the Cultural Development Directorate desired by Jack
Lang in the 1980s, an emblematic ministerial
policies for all audiences. Jacques Toubon
In 1993, the national digitization plan was launched, anticipating the impact of
at the start of the Internet. It’s Catherine
Trautmann launches the Public Service Mission Charters. It is
Catherine Tasca, who put in place in 2000, the plan Art and
for the development of arts and cultural education in the
“Kindergarten to University”, first affirmation of political will
strong in this field. This is the mechanism of the New
art» in 2001, these artistic wastelands are sources of innovations in the arts
plastics and live entertainment.

Many of you participated in this momentum. In the scenes
in the work of companies and artists, I know that
much is being done in the field of mediation, particularly in
destination for young audiences; in museums, I know that much is
made in the matter of accessibility, in accordance with the 2005 law; in the
festivals, in places dedicated to live entertainment, I know that many
is made to attract close audiences, with the promotion of
associated events in the territory; in the field of cinema, the
room digitization plan worn by the National
Cinematography and motion picture – including
isolated rooms in rural areas - can make it more accessible.
All this, I know, all this I see during my meetings, during my
movements. I met the big actors, I spoke with Robert
Abirached, Jacques Rigaud, Hugues Gall, but also Laurent Bayle for
his project Demos, Chantal Lamarre in Lens, Jérôme Bouvier and his project
for the Utrillo tower in Clichy/Montfermeil. Today, I turn to you
want to speak, you who are the living forces of the Culture, those who
invent it, those who disseminate it; those who create it and those who create it

I also want to address the local and regional authorities, many of whom
representatives are here with us this morning. I know their
concerns and their difficulties in preserving funding for
culture. I fought, as you know, to preserve the
cross-cultural competences in territorial reform.
The needs and expectations are there: we all know it, we measure it
every day. Today, we are led to rebuild and
deepening our partnerships. To reach new audiences, to
better support artists and emerging creation, we must
dialogue, work and exchange more. This forum is an illustration of
the strong ambition of the Ministry of Culture and Communication. I
wants it to listen, to dialogue with the actors but to remain
Cultural Policy Pilot. I know that some have
In the last few months, the Commission has mentioned withdrawals and a lack of ambition.
The reality brings them a denial: the Ministry is there and well there on the
substantive topics – the Valois Talks illustrate this in the field of
performing arts – as on major construction sites (the MuCEM
Marseille, the Philharmonie, the National Archives in Pierrefitte) and the
“future investments” to meet the challenge of the
digital revolution.

Territorial ambition is at the heart of this ministry’s action. It is
ever present, it is more necessary than ever to reconquer the
“lost territories” of cultural action. I hope that this forum will be
a starting point and not an end point, I wish it to be a
an invitation to debate and not a lock in a combat posture.

But times have changed. The need for culture is there, individual desire
culture is there, more present than ever, but they have evolved. The
street entertainment companies invest Aurillac, Chalons and well
other cities, fanzines and TV associations are multiplying in the
districts, amateur practices intensify, real
“taste communities” are born on blogs and social networks.
Are we satisfied with the 915,000 visitors who have visited?
the retrospective on Monet at the Grand Palais or the 206
million spectators who attended movie theatres in 2010? I
do not believe in the law of brass of attendance, I do not believe in the
policy of numbers and ratings. I want to get to the bottom of this, I
hopes that we will engage in profound action for these
which sometimes causes discomfort, sometimes even discomfort

Through this forum, I wish to respond to the new realities of the
French society at the beginning of the 21st century: individualisation of practices
cultural inequalities; persistent inequalities of access, especially in neighbourhoods
in the rural and peri-urban world; social and
and the risk of “cultural communitarianism”, pointed out if
by sociologists such as Louis Chauvel or Eric
Maurin; increasing visibility of the diversity of French society,
huge pool of talent and openness to the world. These are the realities
that this Forum must face without a priori, without preconceived ideas, with
all the necessary openings.
In recent years, the development of digital and
the Internet has profoundly transformed the conditions under which the
culture, but also the landscape of amateur practices, promoting
the emergence of new forms of expression, new modes of
dissemination of content in the context of free time. Dissemination of tools
digital in homes is now often the occasion of the first
contact of new generations with cultural content. Culture
screens are there in front of us, what is important to promote is a
true image education at the height of the stakes.

Arts and cultural education is naturally one of the keys
of cultural democratization. I would like to commend the
for five years by the High Council for Arts Education and
Cultural. Didier Lockwood, its Vice-President, Alain Casabona, his
and all its members. Proposed in 2006, the
creation of an arts history education has now reached a milestone,
an essential step with compulsory education for all
students and a compulsory exam in 2011. The reconciliation of
“sensible and sensitive” is one of the major issues of any policy
of education to ambitious culture. I am convinced that it is
the school of tomorrow’s audiences. But it’s also in the
museums are formed by the free consciences, which are the
pools of democracy.

The other challenge is to defend cultural diversity, to
promote all artistic forms in their richness, their
and their pluralism. Today, France is a
«It’s a chance, it’s an asset, it’s a wealth that allows
the challenges of the global world. It is also a formidable
laboratory observed in the world, as the interest of
US Ambassador to France, Charles Rivkin. This is the
Republican pact, that is the «French melting pot»: recognizing the
of cultures, memories and histories the ability to
build a social body gathered around values. Access to places
culture can contribute powerfully to the service of this humanism
of diversity” that Alain Renaut is calling for.

I know that community actors, artists, researchers, researchers and
institutions are already working to integrate this dimension into the
common heritage. But there can be no diversity without the
diversity: even in the age of the Internet, this goes through a
ambitious for the cultural development of the territory, this requires
awareness-raising from school onwards, finally, through better guidance
of audiences in an often overabundant offer because the diversity offered
is not necessarily consumed.

Tools are not lacking, such as the development of residences
artists, such as renewed support for participatory approaches,
co-production of works or events that promote self-esteem -
because the work speaks above all to the intimate - but also the dialogue with the other.
There is no question of submitting artistic creation or policies
heritage to the taste of the populations, but to consider the populations
not as mere recipients of works but as
cultural actors in their own right. In this respect, I don’t want to impose anything: I
wants to solicit your experience, hear you, listen to you. I
measures well the fact that this Forum cannot address all topics and all
questions. In the central actions for the future of the
cultural democratization, I do not forget the role of street arts, the lever
that represent contemporary music, through the Scenes of
current music (SMAC) in connection with local authorities, the
puppets and contemporary circus whose companies work
strongly to the renewal of the public, finally all the labeled places
“new territories of art”. And I can cite many more examples
who will have a place in the eight round tables of the day.

In the coming weeks, I want to continue a reflection and
experiments with elected representatives, cultural actors in the territories,
the immense reservoir of associations: with you, with your commitment,
without you, without your expertise, without your
knowledge of expectations and needs, my department cannot act
effectively and over time.

I do not wish, as you have understood, to call into question
heart of the patient and continuous action of the public authorities, of all my
since the creation of this department. What I want is
that we highlight good practices, the expertise of
cultural actors in the field, the patient work of associations committed to
cultural terrain to bring together cultural supply and demand

Our policies should be able to strengthen relations and
interactions between «heterogeneous freedoms» to take up Amartya
Sen. The mission of creation and dissemination of cultural institutions
must be constantly reaffirmed. But wouldn’t there be space for
allow people to better position themselves in the world, to better define
their cultural identity, for more respect for them and more respect
for others. In the world as it is, with regard to fractures
the entertainment industry that dominates, the cultural offer must
carry this broader ambition, an ambition that enshrines it as an act of
memory and ethical commitment.

What I refuse, like you, are three dangers that can sometimes
be related: I mean the standardization that alienates, in other words
the global mainstream culture for all; I mean the
cultural communitarianism, and the risks of irreversible fragmentation
of which he is the bearer; I mean the eclipse of the citizen trained and educated to
the figure of the consumer. These perils, it is appropriate not to
exaggerate, but it is important to take the measure to better

But what I aspire to is taking diversity into account
of the 21st century French society in our policies
the use of new tools for access to knowledge and
culture in arts and cultural education, it is finally an attention
increased to prevented audiences, who should not be locked in
ghettos, but feed specific approaches.

You know these issues, you measure them in your
artistic work, in your cultural mediation activity. Let’s work
together, let us share, debate: of these exchanges, I am sure that
will come out the best. As Gaston Bachelard says, Two men, if they
want to hear each other, had to first contradict each other. The truth is daughter of

Thank you.