Public and Private Photographs of Children on Kibbutzim in Israel: Observation and Analysis

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Abstract:

This article analyzes the private and public practices and conventions of photographing children on kibbutzim between 1948 and 1967. It examines the effects of kibbutz egalitarian socialist ideology and lifestyle on the practices of creating photographs of children and the role of the photographers on kibbutzim. Photographs of children in children's homes and communal child rearing, created on kibbutzim in Israel, were viewed as a representation of the epitome of kibbutz life. The photographs were created to serve the needs of the community and its ideology and eventually developed into a genre of their own. The analysis relates to the process of creation of private photographs of children, found in photo albums of individual families on kibbutzim. The article relates to the role of the kibbutz archive and the practices of archiving and their effect in consolidating collective memory. The research employs a semiotic approach to the analysis of the photographs and relates to social communications that developed and their contribution to the construction of meaning in the images.

Keywords: ARCHIVES; CHILDHOOD; EGALITARIANISM; FAMILIES; GENRES; IDEOLOGY; KIBBUTZ; PHOTO ALBUMS; PHOTOGRAPHY; SOCIALISM

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2752/175145212X13330132506988

Publication date: July 1, 2012

More about this publication?
  • Photography & Culture is a refereed journal that is international in its scope and inter-disciplinary in its contributions. It aims to interrogate the contextual and historic breadth of photographic practice from a range of informed perspectives and to encourage new insights into the media through original and incisive writing.

    Photography & Culture publishes research papers, discursive critiques, and reviews. In doing so, it offers a leading platform for critical thinking on photography and as essential reading the world over for academics, curators and practitioners with a central and indeed tangential interest in the media.

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