Photographs, Histories, and Meanings

Hardcover | December 15, 2009

EditorJeanne Perreault, Marlene Kadar, Linda Warley

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Photographs have shaped public perception and social meaning for the last one hundred and fifty years or more. This collection reexamines photographs and their social history, exploring the ideological, ethical, political, and aesthetic forces that inflect interpretation. The authors here trace shifting historical contexts, intentional or accidental interpretive distortions, and ambiguous and multiple meanings. Collectively, they seek to know how images can be believed, given our awareness of the uncertainty of meaning. The contributors in this collection believe the histories they convey are the stories of our lives. To know the photographs is to know ourselves—with all our ambiguities, distortions, and complexities on display.

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Photographs have shaped public perception and social meaning for the last one hundred and fifty years or more. This collection reexamines photographs and their social history, exploring the ideological, ethical, political, and aesthetic forces that inflect interpretation. The authors here trace shifting historical contexts, intentional...

Marlene Kadar is Professor in Humanities and Women’s Studies and former Director of the Graduate Program in Interdisciplinary Studies at York University in Toronto, Canada. She is the Editor of the Life Writing Series at Wilfrid Laurier University Press, and Literary Editor of Canadian Woman Studies. Previous works include the reader ...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.75 inPublished:December 15, 2009Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230617700

ISBN - 13:9780230617704

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Ambiguities, Distortions, Shifts / Marlene Kadar, Jeanne Perreault, and Linda Warley * Not so Innocent: Vision and Culpability in Weegee’s Photographs of Children / Caroline Blinder * Strange Birth: Reading Hands, Reflecting Race in Richard Wright’s Twelve Million Black Voices / Petra Dreiser * Documenting Disaster: Rothstein’s “Steer Skull” and the Use of Photographic Evidence in Environmental and Political Narratives / James Hewitson * Something is Happening: Seeing It / Jeanne Perreault * Ambivalent Image: Twisted Use / Marlene Kadar * Visualizing the Rising: Photography, Memory and the Visual Economy of the 1916 Easter Rebellion / Justin Carville * The Promise of Public Housing: Photographs and the History of the Chicago Housing Authority / Bradford Hunt, Michael Ensdorf, and Kathy Pilat / “More than an observer”: Emmy Andriesse, Dutch Underground Photographer / Conny Steenman-Marcusse and Christl Verduyn * Between the Officer and the Artist: Arnold Odermatt’s Aesthetic-Forensic Project / Thomas Stubblefield * Passionate Protest: Lynching Photography and Appropriative Counter-Performances of the Lynching Ritual / Zoe Trodd * Captured Childhoods: Photographs in Indian Residential School Memoir / Linda Warley * Returning to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: The Tower of Faces Ten Years Later / Laura Levitt

Editorial Reviews

“The collection is a compelling exploration of the ambiguities, distortions, and shifts in photographic interpretation and meaning.”—Archivaria "What is ‘taken’ with the photograph? What remains? In these essays a series of iconic documentary images are the focus of interdisciplinary enquiry that responds to one of the central issues for scholarly work in the humanities today: the power of visual representations, their haunting effects, and their capacity to perform small acts of cultural translation that challenge what we see and know of others and ourselves."--Gillian Whitlock, Author of Soft Weapons: Autobiography in Transit