Photography Theory

Front Cover
James Elkins
Routledge, 2007 - Art - 470 pages
What is a photograph? That simple question is far from settled, as this innovative book demonstrates. "Photography Theory" presents forty of the world's most active art historians and theorists-including Victor Burgin, Joel Snyder, Rosalind Krauss, Alan Trachtenberg, Geoffrey Batchen, Carol Squiers, Margaret Iversen, Abigail Solomon-Godeau-in animated debate on the nature of photography. Photography has been around for nearly two centuries, but we are no closer to understanding what it is. For some people, a photograph is an optically accurate impression of the world. For others, it is mainly a way of remembering people and places. For still others, it is a sign of bourgeois life, a kind of addiction of the middle class. And for yet others, it is a troublesome interloper, which has confused people's ideas of reality and fine art to the point that they have difficulty even defining what a photograph is. And for some, the whole question of finding photography's nature is itself misguided from the beginning. This provocative second volume in the new Routledge series "The Art Seminar" presents not one but many answers to the question what makes a photograph a photograph?

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User Review  - sameos - LibraryThing

A strange and at times funny discussion about photography. A group of very learned and scholarly hobby-philosophers attempting to "conceptualize" photography. This would probably have worked out ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

James Elkins is E.C. Chadbourne Chair in the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the Art Institute of Chicago, and Head of History of Art at the University College Cork, Ireland. He is author of Pictures and Tears, How to Use Your Eyes, and What Painting Is, and, most recently, The Strange Place of Religion in Contemporary Art and Master Narratives and Their Discontents, all published by Routledge.

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