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Photography, Trace, and Trauma$
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Margaret Iversen

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226370026

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226370330.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 29 May 2020

Indexicality

Indexicality

A Trauma of Signification

Chapter:
(p.17) 2 Indexicality
Source:
Photography, Trace, and Trauma
Author(s):

Margaret Iversen

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226370330.003.0002

This chapter is a re-evaluation of the concept of indexicality as introduced by Charles Sanders Peirce and revived by Rosalind Krauss’s ground-breaking two-part article, “Notes on the Index”, of 1977. The photographic index came under sustained criticism during the 1970s and 80s as it seemed to fix the meaning and establish the truth of the image. More recently, as in the writing of Mary Ann Doane, the index has been rehabilitated as a type of sign caught up in contingency, chance, and accident. It is understood as a type of sign really affected by its object, but non-mimetic. An excursus on Leo Steinberg’s conception of the ‘flatbed’ picture plane as a model of creative receptivity is followed by a survey of artworks composed of the accumulation of dust. This includes discussions of works by Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray, Mary Kelly, and Gabriel Orozco.

Keywords:   Mary Ann Doane, Marcel Duchamp, dust, indexicality, Mary Kelly, Rosalind Krauss, Gabriel Orozco, Charles Sanders Peirce, Leo Steinberg

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