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Mai 68 :
L’Evolution de la mémoire culturelle et des icônes à travers la photographie

L’Evolution de la mémoire culturelle et des icônes à travers la photographie.
Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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Mai 68 : L’évolution de la mémoire culturelle, des mythes et des icônes à travers la photographie
Ariane Sarah Richards, Durham University
This thesis investigates the evolution of the cultural memory of May 68 within French society, through a study of the effect of photography on the building and transmission of myths and icons over a period of 40 years. It begins with an examination of the role of photography in documenting the events of May 68, before moving on to consider the reproduction of these images at each ten-year anniversary of the event. A chronological study of the publication of photographs in dedicated collections and in media coverage of the movement follows this broad contextualisation and theoretical positioning, focusing in particular, although not exclusively, on the visual coverage afforded by Paris Match. This study of each ten-year anniversary and its significance permits the underlining of dominant and recurring myths linked especially to urban space and its visual representation; the masculine hegemony in visual representations of May 68, and finally the mythologisation of Daniel Cohn-Bendit. Following this, a study of the myths identified and their continued modification across the 40 years between the event and its latest anniversary is carried out, in which the creation of icons both in a photographic and human sense is interrogated. The methodological approach of this thesis derives from a range of studies on cultural memory and on the evolving role of photography in the formation of cultural memory in the twentieth century both universally and as a mode of representation that responds to the characteristics of contemporary French society. Overall, these analytical steps underline the heterogeneity of representations of May 68 and enable the formulation of conclusions regarding the importance of photography as a vector for the transmission of cultural memory not only in the French context of May 68 but in modern society at large.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:Mai 68, photographie, mémoire culturelle
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Modern Languages and Cultures, School of
Thesis Date:2013
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:15 Jan 2013 12:07

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