Articles on Photography

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Images of Donald Trump from the midterm campaign. Illustration by Bob Britten

What image will define the 2018 election?

Here's a riddle: What's the dominant image of the 2018 election campaign? There isn't one. But there are many.
A photograph by Oliver de Ros presents a different impression of the migrants at the Guatemalan border than the standard tropes published. Migrants bound for the U.S.-Mexico border wait on a bridge that stretches over the Suchiate River, connecting Guatemala and Mexico, Friday, Oct. 19, 2018. (AP Photo/Oliver de Ros)

Visual tropes of migration tell predictable but misleading stories

Photographs can influence us -- they can inspire us to act and they can also impact the way we think about issues. The recent published photos about the migrant 'caravan' convey several stereotypes.
When The Village Voice shut down in August, the city’s protest movements lost one of their biggest champions. Nick Lehr/The Conversation

The Village Voice’s photographers captured change, turmoil unfolding on New York City’s streets

For decades, the alternative weekly's photographers served as the eyes of the streets, working with activists to document and publicize the anguish and rage of everyday New Yorkers.
This 1904 photograph showing the massacre of villagers by Dutch KNIL forces in the Indonesian village of Koetö Réh was used by the Dutch to argue for the paternalistic colonial state as protector. We now see it as evidence of imperial atrocity. Collection Nationaal Museum van Wereldculturen.

Ten photos that changed how we see human rights

From depictions of slavery to colonial massacres to contemporary portraits of refugees, photography is a powerful tool in evoking ideas of shared humanity.
‘Clotted’ by Eli Moore reveals microscopic details of red blood cells in a clot, and was the winning entry in the 2018 UniSA Images of Research competition. UniSA

Seven beautiful images that share new stories of science

Images taken out of a research context and shared with the public offer a way to connect scientists with the broader world – and vice versa. These photos are stunning examples.
Research that explores resettlement issues from refugee women’s perspectives are needed to inform settlement policy and programs effectively. Author provided

How a photo research project gives refugee women a voice in resettlement policy

Refugee women's voices are often left out of resettlement policy. A participatory research method called photovoice helps uncover resettlement issues from their perspectives.
A 1928 cigarette card classifying an ‘Egyptian beauty’: these cards depicted women as exotic creatures, a trend that can still be seen at beauty contests today. Author provided

Classifying ‘national types of beauty’: from cigarette cards to Miss Universe

Collectable cigarette cards once depicted 'exotic' beauties, classified by the colonial eye. And today's beauty contests still present women as exotic representatives of their nation.
Exhibition installation view of Robert Mapplethorpe: the perfect medium at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, 27 Oct 2017 – 18 Feb 2018. All artworks © Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. Used by permission. Photo: AGNSW, Christopher Snee

Friday essay: Mapplethorpe and me

The distinctive visual style of Robert Mapplethorpe’s beautiful, oversized images seems now more classical than shocking. But he can still reveal the subconscious of an era we think we have outgrown.

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