Anthropology – understanding and benefits

category

General Photography Photographic Technique

author

Graham Miller

Here I am on the other side of the world literally with my day job.  Long flights mean reading time and thats a plus (one of few) and I’m working my way through ‘An introduction to social anthropology’.  The author talks about presenting the results of an anthropological study to the informants/collaborators and somehow distancing those who contributed to the work by using terminology only familiar to those trained in anthropology.  The people who gave so much to all understanding are alienated from the final output because they do not understand the words and concepts used.

How might that apply in photography? Should we present our work in a familiar way so that those who were photographed recognise it, appreciate it and thank us for it?

I’m still convinced that at least some understanding of Anthropology will have a positive effect on the way I approach projects and the quality of the output.

(The image below was taken near Hanoi three years ago and shows children catching butterflies.)

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COMMENTS (2)

  • Georgia Unlimited

    March 2, 2011 , 4:35 am / reply

    had similar questions to paul in the tutorial on monday, he recommended christopher pinney, a visual anthropologist. he'll publish a book "photography and anthropology" soon.
  • Graham Miller

    March 2, 2011 , 11:14 am / reply

    Thanks Uta I'll look out for the book when it is published> G

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