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STORY SUMMARY: Is acceptable to consume art that reflects the “depraved, the cruel, the violent, and the heartless” aspects humanity? In this work of philosophical short story fiction, Felix doesn’t go for “moral relativism.” He believes there is good and evil, that art should not reflect the evil of the world, or enrich artists who are found wanting. Accordingly, Felix has gone about the lifelong process of removing all copies of the depraved art he can find, and afford to buy, in circulation. A police officer comes to his door because his sister in Arizona hasn’t heard from him in months and has asked for a wellness check. Felix explains his abundant video and book collection to the officer who is at first confused, but later begins to understand Felix’s reasoning.
DISCUSSION: Brings up load of great questions about how we judge art in all its forms when associated with an artist. Would you hang a painting that was done by Hitler? Isn’t there enough great music, literature, and art that doesn’t get recognized that it’s worth focusing on the obscure artists who need our support? That said, it’s tough to know if it’s the person or the situation, that makes them do these things. Would a normal person, given the money and power that comes with fame turn into a beast? And, of course, the economics of the whole idea of buying up art to remove it from circulation doesn’t work, but we are willing to suspend this point to get to the better point of the story, should we judge art the artist? Does it matter if they are alive or dead? Does it matter if they ever had the chance to even know their belief system was wrong?
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