Elizabeth Edwards and other specialists discuss the history of photography on BBC Radio 4

Photographic History

In Our Time with Elizabeth Edwards

BBC Radio 4 dedicated an episode of the programme In Our Time to the invention of photography. Broadcasted on the 7th of July 2016, Melvyn Bragg and his guests, Elizabeth Edwards (PHRC), Alison Morrison-Low (National Museums Scotland) and Simon Schaffer (University of Cambridge), discussed the development of photography in the 1830s, when techniques for ‘drawing with light’ evolved to the stage where, in 1839, both Daguerre and Fox Talbot made claims for its invention. These followed the development of the camera obscura, and experiments by such as Thomas Wedgwood and Nicéphore Niépce, and led to rapid changes in the 1840s as more people captured images with the Daguerreotype and calotype. The Daguerreotype and calotype changed the aesthetics of the age and, before long, inspired claims that painting was now dead.

This episode is now available via iPlayer

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