Accepted Papers:

The album as a total social fact  

Author:

David Zeitlyn (Oxford)

Paper Short Abstract:

How can we think anthropologically about albums and other photographic ensembles? What measures are possible which can embrace both old style albums and online collections such as Flickr?

Paper long abstract:

How can we think anthropologically about albums and other photographic ensembles? What measures are possible which can embrace both old style albums and online collections such as Flickr? In the spirit of Durkheim an album can be seen as a total social fact, and we can contrast (even perhaps measure) those reflecting high levels of social involvement with those who are parts of less dense social networks. Since so many photographs are and were in circulation it may be that approaches such as this are what are needed. This also would allow us to compare albums containing images from anthropologists to those without such contributions, so allowing us to evaluate the contribution anthropologists' photographs have made to social networks of people on the ground.

panel P15
Afterimages: Putting ethnography into the family album