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Photography as urban narrative

Arabindoo, P; Delory, C; (2020) Photography as urban narrative. City , 24 (1-2) pp. 407-422. 10.1080/13604813.2020.1739413. Green open access

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Questioning whether we think as much about how we write as to what we write, I undertook recently a more rigorous reflection on what I saw as an exercise in ‘writing the city into the urban’. As I encountered the risk of writing the city out of the urban, I sought to write the city (creatively) back into the (critical) urban. It involved a gesture where photographic images of the city offered new meanings to the textual abstraction of the urban. It is no small act, nor an innocent one. It is also a longstanding one in the representational practices of writing the city. The simple task of juxtaposing photographs with a text while offering new ingenious forms of ‘writing’, opens up questions of not only how these images could very well question the validity of the text but also how photography’s ability to generate an archive of the (city’s) present draws attention to its own ethnographic (im)possibilities and epistemological crisis.

Type: Article
Title: Photography as urban narrative
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/13604813.2020.1739413
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/13604813.2020.1739413
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Writing the city, urban, Chennai, photography, hinterland
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Geography
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10095823
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