Citizens of Photography : The Camera and the Political Imagination

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Citizens of Photography explores how photography offers access to forms of citizenship beyond those available through ordinary politics. Through contemporary ethnographic investigations of photographic practice in Nicaragua, Nigeria, Greece, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Cambodia, the PhotoDemos Collective traces the resonances between political representation and photographic representation. The authors emphasize photography as lived practice and how photography’s performative, transformative, and transgressive possibilities facilitate the articulation of new identities. They analyze photography ranging from family albums and social media to state and public archives, showing how it points to new destinations in the context of social movements, the aftermath of atrocity and civil war, and the legacies of past injustices. By foregrounding photography’s open-ended and contingent nature and its ability to subvert and reconfigure conventional political identifications, this volume demonstrates that as much as photography looks to the past, it points to the future, acting in advance of social reality.

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