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By Michael S. Ball, Gregory W H Smith

This quantity presents a uncomplicated framework for utilizing visible info - specifically nonetheless photos - as a device for social research. The authors ascertain the significance of theoretical assumptions in interpreting those facts and supply suggestion on the right way to use pictures in cognitive, symbolist and structuralist learn. The ebook is richly illustrated with examples starting from local American mask to fragrance ads.

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Masks •evidently differ from self-decoration; they are what the Strathems termed representational, insofar as they figuratively and some would argue literally transform the wearer into another person, animal, bird, fish, spirit, or whatever (Walens, 1981 ). 42 Levi-Strauss commenced his book in a characteristically ebullient manner, evoking the magic these mask styles held for him. He noted his admiration for their aesthetic properties even as he indicated the analytical problem they posed: Looking at these masks, I was ceaselessly asking myself the same questions.

_. 8. Catherine Deneuve for Chanel. Photo from Williamson. 9. Margaux Hemingway and Babe. Photo from Williamson. 10. Chanel No. 5 ad. Photo from Williamson. 10). Williamson writes: ''This is pure advertisement: the very essence of all advertising" (p. 90). The advertisement is a sign that is also attempting to present its referent, real bottles of Chanel No. 5, which of course are absent. Hence the peculiar "transparency" of this advertisement. Williamson examined a further range of techniques that advertisements emploit·o-~~~vey- theirmessage~ partiCiila'r iiiforesds the.

Are Conclusion The current chapter has indicated how symbolic and structuralist analyses can be applied with penetrating results to visual materials such as selfdecoration, masks, and advertisements. Each of the works considered exhibits its own distinguishing characteristics. The Stratherns' book is rich in ethnographic detail, including some 115 photographs, and involved a light application of theory. In contrast, the work of both Levi-Strauss and Williamson is less ethnographically detailed, but more reliant on preconceived theoretical ideas.

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