This substantial and ambitious dictionary explores the languages and cultures of visual studies. It provides the basis for understanding the foundations and motivations of current theoretical and academic discourse, as well as the different forms of visual culture that have come to organize everyday life. The book is firmly placed in the context of the 'visual turn' in contemporary thought. It has been designed as an interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary introduction to the vocabularies and grammars of visuality that inform thinking in the arts and humanities today. It also offers insight into the philosophical frameworks which underpin the field of visual culture. A central theme that runs throughout the entries is the task of moving away from a narrow understanding of visuality inherited from traditional philosophy toward a richer cultural and multi-sensorial philosophy of concrete experience. The dictionary incorporates intertextual links that encourage readers to explore connections between major themes, theories and key figures in the field. In addition the author's introduction provides a comprehensive and critical introduction which documents the significance of the visual turn in contemporary theory and culture. It is accompanied by an extensive bibliography and further reading list. As both a substantive academic contribution to this growing field and a useful reference tool, this book offers a theoretical introduction to the many languages of visual discourse. It will be essential reading for graduate students and scholars in visual studies, the sociology of visual culture, cultural and media studies, philosophy, art history and theory, design, film and communication studies.
Barry Sandywell is Honorary Research Fellow in Social Theory in the Department of Sociology at York, UK. He is the author of Logological Investigations (1996), a multi-volume work on the history of reflexivity, alterity and ethics in philosophy and the human sciences: Reflexivity and the Crisis of Western Reason (volume 1), The Beginnings of European Theorizing: Reflexivity in the Archaic Age (volume 2), and Presocratic Reflexivity: The Construction of Philosophical Discourse (volume 3). He is also the co-editor of Interpreting Visual Culture: Explorations in the Hermeneutics of the Visual (1999) and of essays on Baudrillard, Bakhtin, and Benjamin and other theorists published in various journals and collections. Recent publications include essays on digitalization, cyberspace, new media and global criminality as part of a continuing programme of research concerned to map the reflexive transformations of postmodern societies and cultures. He is currently editing (with Ian Heywood) an original collection of essays with the title Handbook of Visual Culture which will be published by Berg in 2011.
Contents: Introduction; Part 1 Prologues; Part 2 Preview and Methodology; Part 3 Thematic Orientations; Select bibliography; Annotation conventions and abbreviations; A-Z: the dialectical lexicon of terms; General bibliography; Index.