New government guidelines on art submitted for funding through the National Endowment for the Arts are preposterous and dangerous, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee said Saturday in Pittsburgh.
"We are turning into a passive society that wishes to be entertained, to be taken out of itself, to be fed easy truths," he said. "Simply because you are putting money into the arts doesn't mean that you have the right to diminish the arts."Bills to continue the NEA are pending in both the House and Senate, and a fight is expected over several proposals to apply provisions restricting federal subsidies from going to art that is deemed obscene, sacrilegious or otherwise offensive.
Albee, winner of several Pulitzer Prizes and author of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" spoke to about 200 people at Carnegie Mellon University's College of Fine Arts after accepting the Carnegie Mellon Commitment to Playwriting Award.