CFP: Photographic Proofs

From H-ArtHist:


Photographic Proofs

Yale University, New Haven, CT
Friday-Saturday, April 4-5, 2008

"A photograph passes for incontrovertible proof that a given thing happened. The picture may distort; but there is always a presumption that something exists, or did exist, which is like what's in the picture." -
Susan Sontag

"But the proof of the pictures was in the reading. The photographs had to have their status as truth produced and institutionally sanctioned." -
John Tagg

The Yale University Photographic Memory Workshop, in conjunction with the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale, invites submissions for a graduate student conference entitled "Photographic Proofs." The theme of this conference should be interpreted broadly. Papers could be theoretical, historical, or critical explorations based upon one photograph or a collection of photographs. They might interrogate the theme of photographic proofs from one of many different angles, including documentary, artistic, commercial, and vernacular photography. Selected sets of photographs may relate to war, science, medicine, race, class, law, business, reform, the natural and built environment, frontiers, performance, gender, sexuality, or family, among other subjects.

In order to engender an inter-disciplinary community and to further
challenge and develop the vocabulary that surrounds photographic
criticism, we encourage submissions from graduate students at all stages
of their studies, working in any discipline. The Beinecke Library will add
to this discussion by hosting a workshop for conference participants
highlighting the library's extensive photographic holdings.

We are pleased to announce that Professor John Tagg will deliver the
opening keynote address. John Tagg is Professor of Art History and
Comparative Literature at Binghamton University. His books, which often
focus on the relationship between photography and power, include The
Burden of Representation: Essays on Photographies and Histories, Grounds
of Dispute: Art History, Cultural Politics and the Discursive Field, and
the forthcoming The Disciplinary Frame: Photographic Regimens and the
Capture of Meaning.

In an effort to foster a geographically diverse community of graduate
student presenters, we are pleased to be able to cover travel and
accommodation expenses for students whose papers are selected.

Email CVs and abstracts to by Monday, October
15. Abstracts should be under 300 words. Final papers should not exceed 20
minutes in length. We will notify selected speakers by December 15.

Co-organizers: Alice Moore and Francesca Ammon, graduate students in
American Studies. Please address any questions to

Francesca Ammon Graduate Student, American Studies Yale University


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