Civil Contract of Photography
In this compelling work, Ariella Azoulay reconsiders the political and ethical statusof photography. Describing the power relations that sustain and make possible photographic meanings,Azoulay argues that anyone -- even a stateless person -- who More...
Buy it from:
List Price: $22.95
Publisher: Zone Books
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.75" tall
In this compelling work, Ariella Azoulay reconsiders the political and ethical statusof photography. Describing the power relations that sustain and make possible photographic meanings,Azoulay argues that anyone -- even a stateless person -- who addresses others through photographs oris addressed by photographs can become a member of the citizenry of photography. The civil contractof photography enables anyone to pursue political agency and resistance through photography.Photography, Azoulay insists, cannot be understood separately from the many catastrophes of recenthistory. The crucial arguments of her book concern two groups with flawed or nonexistentcitizenship: the Palestinian noncitizens of Israel and women in Western societies. Azoulay analyzesIsraeli press photographs of violent episodes in the Occupied Territories, and interprets variousphotographs of women -- from famous images by stop-motion photographer Eadweard Muybridge tophotographs from Abu Ghraib prison. Azoulay asks this question: under what legal, political, orcultural conditions does it become possible to see and to show disaster that befalls those who canclaim only incomplete or nonexistent citizenship? Drawing on such key texts in the history of moderncitizenship as the Declaration of the Rights of Man together with relevant workby Giorgio Agamben, Jean-François Lyotard, Susan Sontag, and Roland Barthes, Azoulay explores thevisual field of catastrophe, injustice, and suffering in our time. Her book is essential reading foranyone seeking to understand the disasters of recent history -- and the consequences of how theseevents and their victims have been represented.