1st Edition

The Photography Cultures Reader Representation, Agency and Identity

Edited By Liz Wells Copyright 2019
    590 Pages
    by Routledge

    590 Pages
    by Routledge

    The Photography Cultures Reader: Representation, Agency and Identity engages with contemporary debates surrounding photographic cultures and practices from a variety of perspectives, providing insight and analysis for students and practitioners.

    With over 100 images included, the diverse essays in this collection explore key topics, such as: conflict and reportage; politics of race and gender; the family album; fashion, tourism and surveillance; art and archives; social media and the networked image. The collection brings together essays by leading experts, scholars and photographers, including Geoffrey Batchen, Elizabeth Edwards, Stuart Hall, bell hooks, Martha Langford, Lucy R. Lippard, Fred Ritchin, Allan Sekula and Val Williams. The depth and scope of this collection is testament to the cultural significance of photography and photographic study, with each themed section featuring an editor’s introduction that sets the ideas and debates in context.

    Along with its companion volume – The Photography Reader: History and Theory – this is the most comprehensive introduction to photography and photographic criticism.

    Includes essays by: Jan Avgikos, Ariella Azoulay, David A. Bailey, Roland Barthes, Geoffrey Batchen, David Bate, Gail Baylis, Karin E. Becker, John Berger, Lily Cho, Jane Collins, Douglas Crimp, Thierry de Duve, Karen de Perthuis, George Dimock, Sarah Edge, Elizabeth Edwards, Francis Frascina, André Gunthert, Stuart Hall, Elizabeth Hoak-Doering, Patricia Holland, bell hooks, Yasmin Ibrahim, Liam Kennedy, Annette Kuhn, Martha Langford, Ulrich Lehmann, Lucy R. Lippard, Catherine Lutz, Roberta McGrath, Lev Manovich, Rosy Martin, Mette Mortensen, Fred Ritchin, Daniel Rubinstein, Allan Sekula, Sharon Sliwinski, Katrina Sluis, Jo Spence, Carol Squiers, Theopisti Stylianou-Lambert, Ariadne van de Ven, Liz Wells, Val Williams, Judith Williamson, Louise Wolthers and Ethan Zuckerman.

    General Introduction

    Part One

    The Photographic Gaze


    1 Roberta McGrath

    Re-Reading Edward Weston: Feminism, Photography and Psychoanalysis

    2 Jan Avgikos

    Cindy Sherman: Burning Down the House

    3 Sarah Edge and Gail Baylis

    Photographing Children: The Works of Tierney Gearon and Sally Mann

    4 Lucy R. Lippard

    Doubletake: The Diary of a Relationship with an Image

    5 Catherine Lutz and Jane Collins

    The Photograph as an Intersection of Gazes: The example of National Geographic

    6 Ariadne van de Ven

    The Eyes of the Street Look Back: In Kolkata with a Camera Around My Neck

    7 Theopisti Stylianou-Lambert

    Tourists with Cameras: Reproducing or Producing

    8 Louise Wolthers

    Surveilling Bodies: Photography as Control, Critique and Concern


    Part Two

    Reportage – Image as Agent


    9 John Berger

    Photographs of Agony

    10 Fred Ritchin

    Of Them, and Us

    11 Francis Frascina

    Face to Face: Resistance, Melancholy and Representations of Atrocities

    12 Liam Kennedy

    Framing Compassion

    13 Sharon Sliwinski

    On Photographic Violence

    14 Ariella Azoulay

    The Ethic of the Spectator: The Citizenry of Photography

    15 Elizabeth Hoak-Doering

    A Photo in a Photo: The Optics, Politics and Powers of Hand-held Portraits in Claims for Justice and Solidarity

    16 André Gunthert

    Digital Imaging Goes to War: The Abu Ghraib Photographs

    17 Ethan Zuckerman

    Curating Participation

    18 Mette Mortensen

    When Citizen Photojournalism Sets the News Agenda: Neda Agha Soltan as a Web 2.0 Icon of Post-Election Unrest in Iran


    Part Three

    Image and Identity


    19 David A. Bailey and Stuart Hall

    The Vertigo of Displacement

    20 Rosy Martin and Jo Spence

    Photo-Therapy: Psychic Realism as a Healing Art?

    21 George Dimock

    "The Negro As He Really Is": W. E. B. Du Bois and Arthur Radclyffe Dugmore

    22 bell hooks

    In Our Glory: Photography and Black Life

    23 Annette Kuhn

    Photography and Cultural Memory: a Methodological Exploration 

    24 Lily Cho

    Citizenship, Diaspora and the Bonds of Affect: The Passport Photograph


    Part Four

    Snapshot Culture and Social Media


    25 Pat Holland

    Family Snaps, Introduction: History, Memory, and the Family Album

    26 Martha Langford

    Strange Bedfellows: Appropriations of the Vernacular by Photographic Artists

    27 Geoffrey Batchen

    Observing by Watching: Joachim Schmid and the Art of Exchange

    28 Lev Manovich

    Watching the World

    29 Daniel Rubenstein and Katrina Sluis

    A Life More Photographic: Mapping the Networked Image


    Part Five

    Medium and Meditations


    30 Roland Barthes

    Ornamental Cuisine and The New Citroën

    31 Judith Williamson

    Tiffany, Porsche Panamera and Microsoft Cloud

    32 Yasmin Ibrahim

    The Pornography of Food Imaging: The Aesthetics of Capturing Food Online

    33 Karin E. Becker

    Photojournalism and the Tabloid Press

    34 Carol Squiers

    Class Struggle: The Invention of Paparazzi Photography and the Death of Diana, Princess of Wales

    35 Karen de Perthuis

    The Synthetic Ideal: The Fashion Model and Photographic Manipulation

    36 Ulrich Lehmann

    Chic Clicks: Creativity and Commerce

    37 Val Williams

    A Heady Relationship: Fashion Photography and the Museum, 1979 to the Present


    Part Six

    Contexts: Art, Archives, Education


    38 Douglas Crimp

    The Museum’s Old, the Library’s New Subject

    39 Thierry Du Duve

    Art in the Face of Radical Evil

    40 Allan Sekula

    Reading an Archive: Photography Between Labour and Capital

    41 Elizabeth Edwards

    Photographs: Material Form and the Dynamic Archive

    42 Liz Wells

    Words and Pictures: On Reviewing Photography

    43 David Bate

    Art, Education, Photography



    Liz Wells, curator and writer, is Professor in Photographic Culture, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of Plymouth, UK. She edited Photography: A Critical Introduction (2015, 5th ed.) and co-edits photographies, Routledge journals. Publications on landscape include Land Matters, Landscape Photography, Culture and Identity (2011). She is series editor for Photography, Place, Environment.