The Duty of an Artist

The incomparable Nina Simone on the duty of an artist. “How can you be an artist and not reflect the times?” Do you agree or disagree?

cover for Moxie, Vol. 1 by Jay SennettMy essay collection, Moxie, Vol. 1, will be released January 15, 2018. Preorder your copy today at Amazon, Nook, Kobo and Apple Books.


  1. I agree wholeheartedly. There are many ways to reflect the times. For example in writing sci-fi, you can write about current issues set in a futuristic setting to take the reader out of her everyday mind and make him look at the concepts from a different place. That is the simplest example I can share. My own writing is either set in a contemporary time or within the past 40 years, which I would think Ms. Simone would likely approve of as reflecting the times. While my WIP is forty years in the past, the issues are contemporary ones, with lines perhaps drawn more clearly because of the difference in the times. This is a powerful quote, Jay, thank you for finding and sharing it. May I reblog, assuming I can figure out how?

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