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“Photography in the Middle East”: A Book Celebration in Honor of Ali Behdad

Apr 5, 2017 @ 6:00 am 8:00 pm

In the decades after its invention in 1839, photography was inextricably linked to the Middle East. Introduced as a crucial tool for Egyptologists and Orientalists who needed to document their archaeological findings, the photograph was easier and faster to produce in intense Middle Eastern light—making the region one of the original sites for the practice of photography.

This panel addresses how the Middle East played a crucial role in the development of photography both as a new technology and as a commercialized mass medium. Stephen Sheehi (the author of Arab Imago) and Joseph Boone (the author of The Homoerotics of Orientalism) will discuss the Middle East’s influences on photography’s evolution in the context of Ali Behdad’s newly published Camera Orientalis.


UCLA Departments of English and Comparative Literature, UCLA Iranian Studies


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