All posts filed under: Borders

Seeing in the Eye: On Photography and the Gaze

“The danger of identifying with a stranger is the possibility of becoming a stranger. To lose one’s racialized rank is to lose one own valued and enshrined difference”. In my preoccupation with borders, movement and all the various forms of differences they presuppose, I have, more often than not, encountered the question: how can imagery (and by extension photography) play a useful role in the restitution of our world towards more conscious and correlational human relationships? As an attempt to reflect on this question, I would like to begin with the above-cited quote from Toni Morrison’s The Origin of Others. It would seem, at first glance, that it is a quote about reciprocity. Yes. There is that, yet it goes even further. It is a quote about affecting the gaze. Thus I would, for the purpose of my reflection, argue that everything begins with the gaze: affect the gaze and naturally, the effect reciprocates. In the language of the Igbo people of Nigeria (one that I speak as my mother’s tongue), the gaze is central …