I wasn’t sure if Kait would see this if I just commented on her project post so I wanted to post a little note here for her.
The New School’s Memory group (a group of grad students mostly in psychology and sociology) has weekly seminars and I heard one of their presenters (Kimberly Spring) speak about her research last spring and I thought you might want to get in touch w/ her. Her work is primarily focused on photography but I remember her briefly mentioning blogs as well. Here is the info I have… The seminars meet during our class on Wednesday but you could probably email her… here is the email for the group (who would probably give you her email): firstname.lastname@example.org
Here’s the info on her seminar lecture:
-Kimberly Spring (Sociology, New School for Social Research) will present a paper titled “Re-Presenting Victim and Perpetrator: The Role of Photographs in U.S.
Service Members’ Testimony Against War”
Since Mathew Brady first documented the life and death of soldiers in
the U.S. Civil War, photographs have become central to the collective
memory of war. However, whereas the visual recording of war has
traditionally been the purview of journalists, today the images of war
are increasingly presented through the lenses of those most directly
involved – military service members – to the extent that the photographs
taken by soldiers at Abu Ghraib prison have arguably had a greater
influence on the collective memory of the Iraq War than any other image.
This paper examines how some U.S. veterans of the Iraq War have
integrated this practice of taking pictures into a critique of the
military. The analysis considers how the veterans attempt to fix the
meaning of photographs through the problematization of their use in the
military; how the photographs serve as a mechanism for remembering; and
the ways in which the images, as analogons of reality, bring the past
into the present. Utilizing Roland Barthes’ concept of a photograph’s
“third meaning,” I examine how the presentation of the photographs
reveals the disguised meaning in these types of images, which lies in
the human capacity to find triumph in the suffering and subordination of
others, in order to affect social transformation.