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Destroying the negatives: M. N. Srinivas, fire, and photography

Pinney, Christopher; (2021) Destroying the negatives: M. N. Srinivas, fire, and photography. HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory , 11 (2) pp. 877-893. 10.1086/716932. Green open access

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Abstract

M. N. Srinivas’s The remembered village bristles with references to photography, from a formal group image of villagers marking Gandhi’s death to an account of villagers’ enthusiasm for the products of Srinivas’s own camera. We learn, among other things, that Srinivas became known as the “chamara man,” that he photographed the castration of bulls, that some of his photographs were almost involved in a court case, and that a Dalit worker resisted the ethnographer’s camera because the police used photographs to trace runaway servants. This article examines his recounting of the role of the camera in Rampura, and the relationship of photography to memory, evidence, and politics, before moving to a very different village in central India whose recent and current fixation with the camera, and what it makes visible and permanent, is explored.

Type: Article
Title: Destroying the negatives: M. N. Srinivas, fire, and photography
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1086/716932
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1086/716932
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: M. N. Srinivas, photography, fire, The remembered village, anthropology of India
UCL classification: 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 Anthropology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10149075
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