Camera Graeca: Photographs, Narratives, Materialities by Philip Carabott, Yannis Hamilakis and Eleni Papargyriou

Camera Graeca: Photographs, Narratives, Materialities by Philip Carabott, Yannis Hamilakis and Eleni Papargyriou.

While written sources on the history of Greece have been studied extensively, no systematic attempt has been made to examine photography as an important cultural and material process. This is surprising, given that Modern Greece and photography are almost peers: both are cultural products of the 1830s, and both actively converse with modernity. Camera Graeca: Photographs, Narratives, Materialities fills this lacuna. It is the first inter-disciplinary volume to examine critically and in a theorised manner the entanglement of Greece with photography. The book argues that photographs and the photographic process as a whole have been instrumental in the reproduction of national imagination, in the consolidation of the nation-building process, and in the generation and dissemination of state propaganda. At the same time, it is argued that the photographic field constitutes a site of memory and counter-memory, where various social actors intervene actively and stake their discursive, material, and practical claims. As such, the volume will be of relevance to scholars and photographers, worldwide.

Contents: Introduction: Capturing the eternal light: photography and Greece, photography of Greece, Philip Carabott, Yannis Hamilakis and Eleni Papargyriou. Part 1 Imag(in)ing the Nation: The three-way mirror: photography as record, mirror and model of Greek national identity, John Stathatos; Greece as photograph: histories, photographs, theories, Alexandra Moschovi; Photographing Greece in the 19th century, Aliki Tsirgialou; Doors into the past: W. J. Stillman (and Freud) on the Acropolis, Fred Bohrer; Photographing the present, constructed with the past: Sébah’s photographic mediation of modernisation in 19th-century Greece, Heather Grossman. Part 2 Photographic Narratives, Alternative Histories: The photographic and the archaeological: the other Acropolis, Yannis Hamilakis & Fotis Ifantidis; Greece through the Stereoscope. Constituting spectatorship through texts and images, Kostas Ioannidis & Eleni Mouzakiti; Archaeology of refraction: temporality and subject in George Seferis’s photographs, Theodoros Chiotis; Textual contexts of consumption: the Greek literary photobook, Eleni Papargyriou. Part 3 Photographic Matter-Realities: Photography as Propaganda: Once upon a time in Asia Minor: Arnold and Rosalind Toynbee’s frames of the Greco-Turkish War in Anatolia (1919-1922), Giorgos Giannakopoulos; Nelly’s iconography of Greece, Katerina Zacharia; War photographs re-used: an Approach to the photograph collection of the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Sarandaporo, Eleni Kouki. Part 4 Photographic Ethnographies: The Dispersal of Photographic Objects: From ‘here and now’ to ‘there and then’: reflections on fieldwork photography in the nineteen-sixties, Margaret E. Kenna; Pictures of exile, memories of cohabitation: photography, space and social interaction in the island of Ikaria, Elena Mamoulaki; Shepherds as images, shepherds with images: photographic (re) engagements in Sfakia, Crete, Konstantinos Kalantzis; Personal photographs, migration and the technology of (re), Penelope Papailias. Part 5 Afterword: Photography and Greece – a historian’s perspective, Ludmilla Jordanova. Index.

To be published in July 2015.


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