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Workshop by Prof. Shose Kessi - PhotoVoice as a Practice of Representation and Social Solidarity

06 June 2023 / 09:00 – 15:30 - Iwalewahaus, Wölfelstraße 2, 95444 Bayreuth


The workshop will revolve around methodological reflections and tools to elevate epistemologies from the Global South and to end epistemic violence reproduced through the illusion of methodological objectivity. Working in the African Studies realm in Europe, we as young scholars are constantly confronted with a stigmatizing representation of the communities and countries we work with in terms of history, development, and agency. The method of PhotoVoice provides a powerful tool to resist such stigmatizations and provides a community-based research method to practice social solidarity, listening practice for research to challenge our own lens, and allow community self-representation and shaping of narratives.The PhotoVoice method is a practical method where the respective communities and interview partners express themselves by taking pictures, capturing contexts and stories through those pictures. In a powerful way, this method hands over the lens and agency in a double meaning away from the researcher and towards the interviewees, following their lens and narratives. Using PhotoVoice methods, conflicting images of community life are able to emerge between stigmatizing representations based on the gendered and racialized discourse of postcoloniality and the resistance through alternative images that recognize community agency.


  • 09:00 - 09:30:   Welcome and introduction to the workshop
  • 09:30 - 11:00:   Introduction to the PhotoVoice method and discussion of literature / texts
  • 11:00 - 12:30:   PhotoVoice exercise
  • 12:30 - 13:30:   Lunch break
  • 13:30 - 15:30:   African Studies: A reflection and focus group discussion
  • 15:30:               End of the Workshop
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