Information and discussion on all aspects of British photographic history
An evening with the journal Photography & Culture.
This talk explores the complex subject of the Jewish engagement with photography and the writing of photographic history.
Michael Berkowitz focuses on the historical efforts of Peter Pollack (1909-1978), author of The Picture History of Photography (1958, rev. ed., 1977) and founding photography curator at the Art Institute of Chicago. Pollack was invited to be the sub-editor for "jews in Photography" in the Encyclopaedia Judaica (1971).
In addition to analysing Pollack's work for that project, Berkowitz presents evidence to illustrate Pollack's tentative claims about Jewish over-representation in many key areas of photography.
Michael Berkowitz is Professor of Modern Jewish History at University College London. His current work on photography has been supported by the Ransom Center (University of Texas), the Getty Research Institute (Los Angeles), the British Society for the History of Science (BSHS), and the University of London. His research interests include modern Jewish identity formation and political self-representations; art, politics, and culture; anti-Semitism and Jewish responses. His most recent publications include The Crime of My Very Existence: Nazism and the Myth of Jewish Criminality (2007), and a volume co-edited with Avi Patt, "We Are Here":New Approaches to the History of Jewish Displaced Persons (DPs) in Postwar Germany (2010).This year-long Writing Photography series investigates different approaches, both creative and academic, to writing about photography.
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