News from Mar 01, 2016
Berlin, March 10, 2016
Zentrum Moderner Orient, Kirchweg 33 14129
The First World War is a turning point in the history of photography as it was the first war to be documented meticulously in photographs. Official military and newspaper photographers, but also ordinary soldiers and civilians, created millions of images recording event, and life, at and behind all the fronts and in the occupied territories. Given the sheer volume of photographic sources, it is surprising how little systematic attention these have received from historians of the war. Especially given the absence of written records, or memories of war participants such as colonial soldiers, these largely-neglected photographs become even more important.
The workshop “Colonialism, War & Photography” will explore the multiple histories, and intense meanings, that cluster around war, colonialism, and photography. By exploring the role of photography for colonial spaces and campaigns, it seeks to open up debate on the role of colonial practices of photography before the war, and to ask how the war not only changed these practices, but also modes of visual representation of 'the other' and significant spaces, such as prisoner of war camps. One overarching questions is, what are the long-term effects of such representations in disciplinary and more popular understandings of the war?
The workshop consists of three sessions: The first focuses on the representation of colonial soldiers prior to and during the First World War. The second session is concerned with the internment of soldiers as prisoners-of-war and the role of photography for propagandist and scientific purposes. The third session deals with photographs taken in military campaigns and during occupation, and the interaction between landscape, soldiers, and active war.
The workshop will take place at the Zentrum Moderner Orient in Berlin at 10 March 2016 and follows on from an event previously held at King's College London in September 2015. It is part of the HERA-funded research project "Cultural Exchange in a time of global conflict" and is co-organised by Larissa Schmid (ZMO) and Daniel Steinbach (King’s College London).
by Daniel Steinbach
See here for the workshop programme.