Skip Navigation
UT wordmark
College of Liberal Arts wordmark
anthropology masthead
Anthony Di Fiore, Chair SAC 4.102, Mailcode C3200 78712 • 512-471-4206

Fall 2009

ANT 325L • The Photographic Image - Memory, Place and Everyday Life

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
30492 TTh
3:30 PM-5:00 PM
BEN 1.102

Course Description

"The Photographic Image" applies concepts and practices from visual ethnography to the study of memory, place, and everyday life. The course aims at developing counter-intuitive and subversive approaches to practices of looking and techniques of representation. Whereas photographs are often taken to be archival technologies, we will invert this idea and explore how images can be transient and ephemeral by focusing on sites of encounter and orders of engagement.

This course is organized as a split theory/hands-on exploration of the image and image-making. At all points in the course students are drawn into the use of image-making as an interpretive and critical engagement with course readings. We will begin with techniques of visual inquiry established by visual anthropologists, documentarians, and artists working on the margins of documentary traditions. This course will work primarily with still images. Students will be expected to have at their disposal a camera (digital or analogue).

Grading Policy

Close reading (3 one-page reading assignments) = 30% Scrapbook minor (2 scrapbook entries w/metacommentary) = 30% Scrapbook major (final project; self-directed; written and visual components) = 40%


Barthes, Roland. 1981. Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography. New York: Hill and Wang. Coles, Alex. editor. 2000. Site-Specificity: The Ethnographic Turn. London, UK: Black Dog Pub. Highmore, Ben. 2002. Everyday Life and Cultural Theory: An Introduction. London and New York: Routledge.


bottom border