Still and moving images are crucial factors in contemporary political conflicts. They not only have representational, expressive or illustrative functions, but also augment and create significant events. Beyond altering states of mind, they affect bodies, and often life or death is at stake. Various forms of image operations are currently performed in the contexts of war, insurgency and activism. Photographs, videos, interactive simulations and other kinds of images steer drones to their targets, train soldiers, terrorise the public, celebrate protest icons, uncover injustices, or call for help. They are often parts of complex agential networks and move across different media and cultural environments. This book is a pioneering interdisciplinary study of the role and function of images in political life. Balancing theoretical reflections with in-depth case studies, it brings together renowned scholars and activists from different fields to offer a multifaceted critical perspective on a crucial aspect of contemporary visual culture.
Most of the images and scenes in Histoire(s) du cinéma (1988–98) are
citations. If their origins cannot be found, it is probable, nevertheless,
that in time they will be. Some scenes in the film are staged, for example
monologues by professional actors: Alain Cuny, Sabine Azema, Julie
Delpy, Juliette Binoche and Godard. The monologues are quotations
from philosophy and poetry either directly or in a collage of phrases from
There is an argument in Histoire(s), or allusions to one, that historically the cinema did not realise its true
This book is about images of Africa; who creates them, how they are manipulated, and what the effects are for African actors and their relationships in the wider world. While the role of image in international politics is taken seriously by practitioners and academics, no one has yet produced a systematic account of the particularly important role it plays in the relationships between Africa and the wider world. This book seeks to do this by focusing on the politics of image and Africa, broadly defined to encompass the way political elites, media organisations and individual writers and artists together construct and project images of the continent. The book explores the dynamic processes of image creation in an imaginative way. First, it brings together different disciplinary approaches. Second, it draws on experiences of a wide range of actors and forms of image, including central governments, traditional authorities, journalists, individual artists and authors. Finally, the book brings together ten researchers currently engaged in fieldwork-based research across Africa who together present an empirically rich, fresh take on an important topic.
This interdisciplinary volume explores the role of images and representation in different borderscapes. It provides fresh insight into the ways in which borders, borderscapes and migration are imagined and narrated by offering new ways to approach the political aesthetics of the border. The case studies in the volume contribute to the methodological renewal of border studies and present ways of discussing cultural representations of borders and related processes. The case studies address the role of borders in narrative and images in literary texts, political and popular imagery, surveillance data, video art and survivor testimonies in a highly comparative range of geographical contexts ranging from northern Europe, via Mediterranean and Mexican–US borderlands to Chinese borderlands. The disciplinary approaches include critical theory, literary studies, social anthropology, media studies and political geography. The volume argues that borderlands and border-crossings (such as those by migrants) are present in public discourse and more private, everyday experience. This volume addresses their mediation through various stories, photographs, films and other forms. It suggests that narratives and images are part of the borderscapes in which border-crossings and bordering processes take place, contributing to the negotiation of borders in the public sphere. As the case studies show, narratives and images enable identifying various top-down and bottom-up discourses to be heard and make visible different minority groups and constituencies.
Travelling images critically examines the migrations and transformations of images as they travel between different image communities. It consists of four case studies covering the period 1870–2010 and includes photocollages, window displays, fashion imagery and contemporary art projects. Through these four close-ups it seeks to reveal the mechanisms, nature and character of these migration processes, and the agents behind them, as well as the sites where they have taken place. The overall aim of this book is thus to understand the mechanisms of interfacing events in the borderlands of the art world. Two key arguments are developed in the book, reflected by its title Travelling images. First, the notion of travel and focus on movements and transformations signal an emphasis on the similarities between cultural artefacts and living beings. The book considers ‘the social biography’ and ‘ecology’ of images, but also, on a more profound level, the biography and ecology of the notion of art. In doing so, it merges perspectives from art history and image studies with media studies. Consequently, it combines a focus on the individual case, typical for art history and material culture studies with a focus on processes and systems, on continuities and ruptures, and alternate histories inspired by media archaeology and cultural historical media studies. Second, the central concept of image is in this book used to designate both visual conventions, patterns or contents and tangible visual images. Thus it simultaneously consider of content and materiality.
Working images: Harun Farocki and
the operational image
‘Images without a social goal, not for edification, not for reflection.’ This is the negative definition of ‘operational images’ that Harun Farocki provides in the first part
of his three-part installation Eye/Machine.1 The filmmaker and video artist was
one of the first to examine in depth the various uses of images as instruments. His
work consists in a continuous examination of the operational potential of images
in different fields of practice.
Farocki’s Eye/Machine series (2000
This book is about images of Africa – how they are produced, by whom and for what purposes; and about how they are understood. These questions are fraught because of the continent’s relationship with the wider world, particularly the European world, which for many years assumed the right to create images of Africa, in fiction, travel writing, anthropological research, maps, missionary accounts, colonial records and reports produced by aid agencies. Since the middle of the twentieth century, when the majority of African states began to move
Refracting control from virtual reality to the digital battlefield
Timothy Lenoir and Luke Caldwell
Image operations: refracting control
from virtual reality to the digital
Timothy Lenoir and Luke Caldwell
In the post-Cold War era, the US military invested heavily in a makeover to replace
the massive US ground forces of the post-World War II era with smaller, more
flexible organisational units typified by special operations forces and weapons systems that exploited the new information technologies: what military historian Max
Boot called ‘a new American way of war’ grounded in ‘speed, maneuver, flexibility
… precision firepower, special
Images of terror come as a shock, each time anew. The closer they approach our own lives, the more we are involved and the more we are reminded of other, comparable attacks. Media and communication research on the psychological impact of news images has shown that visuals produce a stronger sense of involvement than texts and carry a more powerful emotional charge. 1 Although we all know that photographs and film or video footage only show part of what could be seen and might sometimes even be manipulated, we do not realise this when we look at them. 2 As
The public image of the amateur and regular forces is often overlooked by
historians discussing military forces.1 This includes the image of the various
arms of the military during their existence, but also the legacy in the collective
memory of a population. Within Ireland, this sort of remembrance, particularly
in the form of memorials which commemorate the First World War, often has
to be balanced with the remembrance of nationalist opposition, culminating
in independence, and the sacrifices of those in British military service are often