Politics, Theory & Photography.
September 28, 2005 12:30 PM   Subscribe

Politics, Theory & Photography. Jim Johnson teaches political theory at the University of Rochester, and has started a new blog that seeks to explore the intersection between political theory and photography. Johnson also has a long paper on the subject [pdf]. [via]
posted by monju_bosatsu (4 comments total)
This is an excellent find, and I thank you for it. There are many many good things on here so far, and what's there makes me think that other good things will follow. I'm particularly interested to see how Johnson develops his critique of beauty in documentary photography, which is well framed by his selection from Adorno. I keep putting off reading Regarding the Pain of Others, but it looks like I'll have to get to it soon, and perhaps also the Scarry book that was linked yesterday. Thanks.
posted by OmieWise at 12:50 PM on September 28, 2005

I was caught by the same post, OmieWise, and the quote from Adorno. This is an area with which I am utterly unfamiliar, but that is fascinating to learn about.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 12:56 PM on September 28, 2005

m_b (do you mind the short form?)-Did you see the review lower down of the Levi Strauss book? Many of the issues raised by the Adorno quote are discussed in a bit more detail, and Johnson says it's better than Sontag's book, so I guess it will go on my list. I thought this quote was interesting:
Readers, of course, may contest any, maybe all, of these interpretations. To my mind though, Levi Strauss persuasively presents Cross, Hoagland, Witkin, Jaar and Salgado (and others) as intentionally adopting aesthetic strategies that will help them "find new ways to reinvest images with believability." As with any purposeful project, there is in all this a substantial, ongoing risk of failure. Intentionality couples attempt and achievement.
I like how the possiblity of failure is contrasted to the attempt at using aestetics positively.

I'm never sure if a lack of comments means that people haven't clicked through to the site, but I wish there were more comments in this thread. One of the main reasons I come to MeFi is to be pointed to sites like this. So, thanks again.
posted by OmieWise at 8:23 AM on September 29, 2005

I'm really looking forward to digging into this. Thanks, monju.
posted by .kobayashi. at 9:49 PM on September 29, 2005

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