Jun 20, 2006

Everybody gets a prize

Terry Teachout on prizes in the arts.
Looking back over the long history of such prizes, it strikes me that even the best-laid and most idealistic institutional plans are inevitably subverted over time by non-artistic considerations. Sooner or later the temptation to inflate the currency in one way or another becomes irresistible, and before you know it you're either out of business (the Leventritt Competition) or no longer taken seriously (the Kennedy Center Honors).

Ann Althouse on the school with 41 valedictorians:
The title of valedictorian is a terrific prize, and it becomes meaningless if every great student wins it.

Ya think?

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