Edwards, Elizabeth (2005) Photographs and the Sound of History. Visual Anthropology Review, 21 (1). pp. 27-46. ISSN 15487458
|Type of Research:||Article|
This paper is a contribution to the growing field of critical cross-cultural studies in the social use of photographs. It explores the nature of photographs as relational objects in the making and telling of histories. It argues that, in the contexts of indigenous and cross-cultural histories in Australia and elsewhere, photographs have a relational quality, occupying the spaces between people and people, and people and things.
Building on previous research on the materiality of photographs (‘Photographs Objects Histories: On the Materiality of Images’ Edwards and Hart 2004) Edwards argues that photographs are socially salient “things” which are engaged with as tactile, sensory objects that are integral to cultural experience. In this paper, photographs are not simply images or even ‘visual history; but oral history, linked to sound, gesture and social relationships. The exploration of these issues through Aboriginal histories, with their differently constituted modes of transmission, throws these issues into sharp relief purposefully, complicating western notions of indexically defined ‘photographic truth’.
As such the paper is a contribution to the developing interest in the anthropology of the senses in relation to images as corporeally experienced. It rethinks the term ‘vision’ in relation to other modalities. Thus it extends thinking on the blurred boundaries of visuality and orality in the telling of and making history.
|Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed:||photography; social practices; senses; histories; indigenous Australians|
|Publisher/Broadcaster/Company:||American Anthropological Association on behalf of the Society for Visual Anthropology|
|Your affiliations with UAL:||Colleges > London College of Fashion|
|Date:||1 January 2005|
|Digital Object Identifier:||10.1525/var.2005.21.1-2.27|
|Date Deposited:||02 Dec 2009 22:54|
|Last Modified:||31 Oct 2013 12:56|
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