The Spiritualists Bok

Ändra sidan Visa ditt intresse Ämne 8364, v2 - Status: normal.
är Bok
Publicerad år 1983
ISBN 0394527402

Bok i ämnet spiritualism med fokus på 1800- och 1900- talen (Passionen i densamma)

Alias: the spiritualists


One of the most fascinating genres in the history of nineteenth-century photography is the suspect practice of spirit photography. It was discovered by a Boston engraver turned photographer named William H. Mumler in March 1861, when he took a photograph of himself alone in his studio only to find that a second figure (or spirit extra), described by some accounts as the ghost image of his dead cousin, appeared next to him on the developed plate. With its origins set against the background of life (and death) during the Civil War, spirit photography would help many mourners cope with the tragic losses around them. Riding high on the wave of enthusiasm for spiritualism that swept through American popular culture at mid-century, with its attendant seances, table tipping, and other occult manifestations, spirit photographs reinforced the familial function of photography by purporting to expose the ghosts of dead friends and relatives to their survivors. In this manner, spiritualism's belief in the afterlife and the possibility of communication with the dead manifested itself in the realm of the visible by means of these spirit photographic proofs imprinted upon glass-plate negatives, But the hermeneutics of suspicion and demystification practices would not allow the spiritualists an uncontested space for these ghostly revelations. Whether derided as the outgrowth of foolhardy religious beliefs or double-exposure frauds, their faith in exposure would produce rationalist and rationalizing accounts for these paranormal photographic phenomena. This essay considers how spirit photography conjures a state of paranoia and paranoiac knowledge for both skeptic