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Balkan Journal of Philosophy

Volume 11, Issue 2, 2019

Costin Popescu
Pages 155-168

Notes on the expressive status of photography

With a history spanning almost two centuries, during which technological advancements on the one hand, and the fluidity of social life on the other, have constantly posed new challenges, photography keeps redefining its place among visual artifacts, and its functions among self-regulatory societal mechanisms. As a widespread practice, photography has generated analyses and commentaries from many theorists of various fields, as well as from more than a few working photographers. Arguments and judgments on the status of photography with regard to its expressive possibilities, adhere to vastly different and often divergent points of view, and most importantly, raise considerable difficulties that prevent these discussions from relying on any methodological coherence. The present text presents some of these arguments and judgments. It aims to provide grounds for more orderly future debates on the artistic quality of photography and especially on the methods of investigating photographic artifacts.

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