Changes in the Lithuanian Performing Arts Field: Causes and Assumptions

Vaidas Jauniškis (PDF)

The research is based on Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of champs and analyses the changes in the structure and aesthetics of the Lithuanian performing arts field over the past 30 years. Cultural field has been heavily influenced by the more powerful political and economic field, and this was particularly obvious in the late 20th and early 21st centuries across the whole Eastern Europe after the fall of iron curtain. NGOs have been constantly contesting for their place and have become very important players on the international level. They have built networks, developed national cultural strategies, established festivals and other art events, and those initiatives have fundamentally changed the aesthetics of the theatre and dance fields. However, the minimal conditions for existence that have been provided for NGOs create the illusion that the prevailing powers care for artists. Then the artists cease to be strong voices, stability turns into stagnation, and the cultural capital accumulated by independent artists does not become a social or economic one, allowing the ruling poles to further consolidate their power. The text presents statistics related to the changes in the field and compares Lithuanian cultural policies with the European trends of the time.

Key words: field, Bourdieu, NGO, Klaic, Aesopian language, festival, LIFE, Sirenos