Portuguese people are among the UE citizens with lower culture activity.
A Eurobarometer study shows us that portuguese people are the UE citizens with lower rates in the participation of culture activities and Portugal is the country with the biggest lack of interest in reading. According to this survey more that 70% of the citizens didn’t went to the cinema for the past 12 months. Going to the theatre also does not make part of the plans of most portugueses, 87% said that they didn’t went to the theatre in the past year. In the visits to galleries, historical monuments and museums just 30% said that they have visited monuments and only 17% went to museums and galleries.
Everyone is blaming the politicians but I believe that’s not who we have to blame. I believe that the fault is in ourselves. People have access to all kind of culture. The nacional museums are free on sunday mornings. Libraries are free. People are holding too much to the idea that they need to choose between working to feed their children or culture. Like we say in portuguese “A Cultura não ocupa lugar” which means that there is always space for culture. An investment in culture is the best that a country can do for their people, increasing the sense of presence and stimulating their creativity, but this should be supported by the people not by the state. That’s the main problem, there is culture in Portugal but there are many portugueses that don’t give the right value to it.
I think we all need to spread the word. This is not a thing that’s only happening in Portugal, it is happening in the rest of the world specially in the countries that are in crisis because they think that they need to give up on this kind of lifestyle and that’s a waste of time and money. People need to change their minds.