Creative artists should always be given the freedom to express their own ideas (in words, pictures, music or film) in whichever way they wish. There should be no government restrictions on what they do. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Although it may seem logical (reasonable) to let creative artists to convey their ideas with total liberty, it can sometimes have negative consequences to the functioning of the society. Therefore, it is sensible for governments to limit their creative freedom to a certain extent, so that art would be used for the welfare of the society.
To start with, although artists are generally considered exemplary individuals who aim at the progress of humanity, some could have vested interests in creating frictions in the society. Art could be used as a tool to create such tensions among different groups of people, especially in a multicultural environment. For example, there have been many instances where film makers in India have included socially sensitive materials, which could hurt the religious or communal sentiments of certain groups. The censorship authority in India has been able to edit the contents of such movies to avoid social frictions. This would certainly mean that censorship is very essential in guiding creative artists to be socially responsible, while expressing their ideas.
Again, sometimes poets, writers or painters express their ideas but they could be detrimental to the existing moral or ethical standards of a particular society. Ideal instances would be books and movies that show excess sexual content or glorify illicit relationships like incest or extra marital affairs. While the artists believe that they should have the freedom to express their perspectives of life, their ideas could mislead the society especially the young. Governmental restrictions in such cases, many believe, is necessary for maintaining the accepted moral practices in a society.
However, according to some, censoring the freedom of artists could lead to suppression of basic human rights. They content that society has the maturity to judge the positive and negative aspects of any work of art. They also believe that many of the accepted moral and ethical standards are not conclusive and should be evolved. Creative artists are instruments of such changes by exposing the society to various ideas. If an artist’s work creates frictions among people, government should use its authority to discipline the society rather than placing the blame on artists. Moreover, corrupt and despotic rulers could use censorship to silence their critics.
In conclusion, restricting artistic liberties is a very complex issue which should be handled from a practical point of view. In principle, freedom of artists should be respected, but if it leads to negative impacts in the society government should restrict artists.