Community as a euphemism

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In the context of the arts, the word “community” sometimes evokes notions of amateur expression.

It’s great that neurosurgeons who play the clarinet or bankers who gave up their dreams of being professional actors or opera singers are sometimes provided with opportunities to engage with the arts or be creative.

Due to the fact that many Britons are acutely mindful of class distinctions, one has to be careful about the way that terminology is used in the presentation or description of work.

When children are cast to perform in West End or major opera house productions, no one describes the work as being of, or for “the community”.

In a similar way, if a major dub Reggae artist performs in a mainstream concert hall, the work is regarded as “professional”. The fact that a new audience is attracted to a new piece of work should not be conflated with issues of class, or of anyone “knowing his or her place” in a society.