Dangers (and/or limitations) of using visual methods

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    For those keen to start using visual methods – as well as others already using them – below are a few references that I’ve think are useful in describing some of the dangers to keep in mind when framing, designing and carrying out visual research projects. Buckingham (2009) and Pink (2006) highlight a number of issues, one that I think is particularly important  (and which is surprisingly a common oversight) – is that images are “not neutral reflections of reality”. They also emphasise the importance of acknowledging the role we as researchers play in producing/and or using images in our research.  Additionally Wiles et al (2008) and Wang and Redwood-Jones (2001) provide some useful descriptions about aspects of ethics that should be considered when producing and/or using visual methods. If anyone else knows of other useful refs that highlight some dangers (and or limitations) or have any comments about important issues to keep in mind – please feel free to post. Thanks!

    Buckingham, D (2009) Creative’ visual methods in media research: possibilities, problems and proposals Media, Culture & Society 31: 633-652

    Pink, S. (2006) The future of visual anthropology Routledge, 1121 Abingdon

    Wiles, R., Prosser, J., Bagnoli, A., Clark, A., Davies, K., Holland, S., Renold, E. ( 2008) Visual Ethics: Ethical Issues in Visual Research. Southampton: ESRC

    Wang, C. C., & Redwood-Jones, Y. A. (2001). Photovoice Ethics: Perspectives from Flint Photovoice. Health Education Behavior Health Educ Behav, 28(5): 560-572.

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