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Lecture | The 4th Adriaan Gerbrands Lecture

How To Do the Ethnography of World-System Photography

  • Prof. dr. Christopher Pinney
Friday 28 November 2014
Adriaan Gerbrands Lectures
Nationaal Museum of Ethnology
Steenstraat 1
2300 AE Leiden

How To Do the Ethnography of World-System Photography

In 'How To Do the Ethnography of World-System Photography' Prof. Pinney will question the role that ethnographies of photographic practice might have for a broader understanding of photography. Photographic theory still largely occurs within an ex-nominated Euro-American sphere into which other parts of the world intrude as occasional exotic footnotes. A world-system photography, it is proposed, would review every provincial studio as an experimental zone in which there may be profound lessons about the relationship between bodies, apparatus and mise-en-scene.


Christopher Pinney is Professor of Anthropology and Visual Culture at UCL. He has recently taught courses at Northwestern University, University of Tsukuba, and Jagiellonian University. The Panizzi Lectures, delivered at the British Library, were published as The Coming of Photography in India (2008). Other books include Photography and Anthropology (Reaktion 2011) and (with the photographer Suresh Punjabi) Artisan Camera: Studio Photography from Central India (Tara Books, 2013). He was awarded a Padma Shri for contributions to Education and Literature by the President of India in 2013.

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