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Bread & Books, book cover and serie

Launched in 2008 with a serie of 5 books, Bread & Books is a young publishing house. Based in London, its will is to publish young writers and researchers texts at a low cost. The first 5 essays were written by Joel Vacheron, a Swiss sociologist and photographer specialised in contemporary cultures.


FACE THE MUSIC. Face the music is an attempt to make sounds visible in an urban context. It is a project of sonic localisation that outlines the political and social implications of the noises of everyday life. After the lasting dominance of the civilization of the image in the production of knowledge, Face the Music aims to be an account in the actual debate in social sciences related to the establishment of a ‘democracy of the senses’. Thus, this essay aims to participate in a re-evaluation of all the senses from the standpoint of their interplay.

APPROPRIATED GAZES: PHOTOGRAPHIC PORTRAITS AND BLACK IDENTITIES. Photography works as a paradigm that allows to examine, both how a technology of representation commonly considered as objective has always been involved in discourse of racial discriminations, and how a new generation of black photographers has appropriated this medium to produce representations that document contemporary mutations of identities. Photographic portraits are then a medium for examining the pertinence of the categorization black photography that is frequently used to indicate the status and distinctiveness of non-western photographic productions. Black subjects and white technology

BETWEEN GOOD AND BAD. Starting from an accidental series, the purpose of Between Good and Bad is to outline the problems that are linked to aesthetic judgements regarding photographic productions. To this end, we will focus our analysis on the arbitrary conventions that allow us to categorise a picture as good or bad. Thus particular attention will be given to the social norms that usally identify ‘failures’ or bad photography, through a popular and an artistic point of view. Consequently, Between Good and Bad will aim to highlight the specific aesthetic experience provided by photographs.

A VISAUL JOURNEY. A visual Journey outlines the longlasting legacy of Benjamin’s writings in the way we think of city life. Since Benjamin’s methods are somewhat unconventional, our first objective will be to highlight the inherent kaleidoscopic dimension of his theory through the notion of dialectical image. According to this principle, we will see how Benjamin’s teaching on topics as varied as private and public lifes, urbanisation, photography or rebellions have challenged the ways in which the city has been commented on and represented.

BLANK TRACES. The purpose of this essay is to provide an analytic framework in which to study photographs where traces, signs, cracks or other details are events allowing to see beyond evident visibility. Therefore, the focus is on pictures singularised by what we will call blank traces. In that sense, the selected images are usually perplexing because their most significant feature is not really visible. For instance, they show empty signs like blank screens, printing errors, scrapings or other light effects that are normally considered accidental or communication failures in photographs.

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