Photography and it’s role in conflict and peace – Research trail – Introduction to HE Part 2

It’s been a day of contemplation and consideration. I made use of a bus journey to develop an ITEP map (similar a spidergram or mind map). I have plotted my primary and secondary research methods and planned which individuals and organisations that I wish to contact.

The most thought provoking part of the day was considering the work of Benjamin Lowy in his book Iraq | Perspectives; Benjamin Lowy; 2012; Duke University Press.

Composing an email that I will send to Getty Images Reportage, the Telegraph newspaper and Stop the War Coalition was really a positive exercise. I decided on my research themes because I believe photography can be used as a platform for change because an image creates an emotional impact and provokes thought. But I have also added a question about the role of photography in propaganda. There is a possibility that photography can be used to halt change by creating feelings of outrage, hatred and justification for violence.

So now I have a counter arguement.

Doing the ITEP map gave me the opportunity to collate keywords and phrases that I can use in Google scholar to aid my research.

In the words of Hannibal Smith “I love it when a plan comes together.” The A Team; Universal Television 1983.

The email I composed.

I am a photography student with The Open College of the Arts, and I am currently exploring the role of photography and it’s Role in Conflict and Peace.
I have a few of questions that I would like to put forward and would appreciate your input if you have the time.
1) What is the aim of using images during a time of conflict?
2) Who are the intended audience?
3) Does photography have such an emotional impact that it is in its own right a medium for social and political change?
4) With the rise of organisations such as ISIL, is it realistic that any one image can be used as propaganda for opposing sides in conflict, and thereby changing the role of photography to one of maintaining impasse and preventing change?
Many thanks.


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