Visual Activism & The Middle East/Contextual & Personal View

    Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch


    The Pictures of War: The Still Image in Conflict since 1945 conference
    Theme: Visual Activism and the Middle East

    The news has been displaying what we already know about the war in Syria and, in fact, any conflict in the Middle East, insofar as it resorts to familiar forms of news reportage. Typically, this can be a stream of constant violent war imagery, which in turn creates a distance between the viewer and the tragedy itself, thus producing a feeling of detachment and indifference - the familiar ‘compassion fatigue'.
    Being a Syrian artist and researcher living in the UK, and having visited Syria in the time of war, will allow me to demonstrate in this presentation; a counter-point to the mainstream way of representing the Syrian war. This will be by bringing to light photography and moving image examples, which convey hidden histories of the affected Syrian people. Examples of my work will also be brought to discussion to take a personal and domestic view on the everyday Syrian life affected by this drastic disruption and violence. The display and analysis of personal and unique examples will help me argue against the unethical constant use of arbitrary violent imagery every time we talk about war.

    In taking a personal and domestic perspective and looking through the eyes of those whom are living the everyday life of the conflict, photography and moving image practice becomes a true way of communicating the unspeakable. While also standing as a resistance symbol in the face of war, by both the image maker and participant. In following this way, we might also succeed in initiating a compassionate response in the viewer and in engaging their sympathy instead of their anger or total dispassion.

    An international conference on the intersections of conflict and pictures from the end of the Second World War to the present day.
    Period23 May 201825 May 2018
    Event titlePictures of War: The Still Image in Conflict since 1945
    Event typeConference
    LocationManchester, United KingdomShow on map
    Degree of RecognitionRegional


    • International Conference
    • Middle East Conflict
    • Image of War