International Visual
Sociology
Association

International Visual Sociology Association

IVSA statement

IVSA Position Statement on Government-Sanctioned and Systemic Racial Violence

The International Visual Sociology Association stands in solidarity with Black and racialized communities in demanding justice and the eradication of the systems of oppression and violence that have inflicted incalculable harm on communities of color in the USA. We stand in opposition to heads of state like U.S. President Donald Trump, who has proven himself to be a racist, xenophobic, misogynistic, homophobic, and violent oppressor. We further decry all systems, institutions, and organizations borne of white supremacy, which continue to perpetuate the violence of White Racism in the USA and beyond.

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The IVSA

IVSA is committed to open and free intellectual discourse surrounding the visual representation of society and culture

The International Visual Sociology Association (IVSA) is a nonprofit, democratic, and academically -oriented professional organization devoted to the visual study of society, culture, and social relationships. Our members represent a wide spectrum of disciplines, including sociology, anthropology, education, visual communication, photography, filmmaking, art, and journalism. On this site you can become a member of the IVSA, view some of our members work or find out more about our annual conference.

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  • The IVSA
  • Membership
  • Conference
  • The IVSA

    The IVSA

    The International Visual Sociology Association (IVSA) is a nonprofit, democratic, and academically -oriented professional organization devoted to the visual study of society, culture, and social relationships.

    Read more

  • Membership

    Membership

    IVSA membership is open to any person regardless of occupation, citizenship, or residence. The organizational membership represents a wide spectrum of disciplines, including sociology, anthropology, education, visual communication, photography, art, journalism, and related fields.

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  • Conference

    Conference

    Each year IVSA members gather in a different global location to share their work in visual sociology, visual studies, visual ethnography, documentary film and photography, public art, arts-based research, and visual literacy and education.

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  • Showcase
  • Journal
  • Awards
  • Showcase

    Showcase

    IVSA members are leaders and innovators in art, photography, filmmaking, and image-based research. Check out our member showcase to see examples of our work.

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  • Journal

    Journal

    Visual Studies is the official journal of the International Visual Sociology Association. As a major international, peer-reviewed journal, Visual Studies presents visually-oriented articles across a range of disciplines.

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  • Awards

    Awards

    IVSA administer both the Rieger Award Program for outstanding work by graduate students in visual sociology and the Prosser Award Program for outstanding work by beginning scholars in visual methodologies.

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Latest News

Updates and news about the IVSA and its membership

Call for Nominations: IVSA Elections 2021/22

The IVSA is governed by its Executive Board of Directors (BOD), which consists of President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Technology Advisor, Visual Studies Editor, Graduate Student Representative, and nine elected Board Members. The VS Editor and Technology Advisor are nominated by the President and ratified by the Executive Board with a majority vote.

The following IVSA Executive Board positions are now open for nominations:

Treasurer
Three Board Members (3-year term)
One Board Member (1-year term)
Graduate Student Representative

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Our virtual conference begins Monday July 5th at 9:00 am EDT!

Here we have details of how to log into the conference itself along with a promo video.

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IVSA Membership

  • Annual subscription to Visual Studies Journal
  • An invitation to IVSA’s Annual Conference
  • Shared Resources
  • Participation in IVSA’s Showcase

Join the IVSA today

  • Mariko Smith IVSA Board Member
  • Molly Merryman: IVSA Vice President
  • Greg Scott: IVSA President
  • David Herman Jr: IVSA Board Member
  • YOLANDA HERNÁNDEZ-ALBÚJAR: IVSA Board Member
  • Susan Hansen: IVSA Board Member
  • Christine Louveau de la Guigneraye: IVSA Board Member
  • Suezen Salinas: Graduate Student Rep
  • Jerome Krase: IVSA Board Member
  • Laura Porterfield: IVSA Treasurer
  • Alexandra Tilman: IVSA Board Member
  • Gill Golding: IVSA Board Member At Large
  • Dr. Gaby David
  • Patricia Prieto-Blanco: IVSA Technology Advisor
  • Carolina Cambre: IVSA Board Member
  • Han Sang Kim
  • Tara Milbrandt: IVSA Board Member
  • Mariko Smith IVSA Board Member

    I undertake an interdisciplinary practice in academic research and the GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives, and museums) sector, specialising in visual sociology, contemporary art, museology, epistemology, and public history.

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  • Molly Merryman: IVSA Vice President

    I am an associate professor of Sociology and the coordinator of the LGBT Studies program at Kent State University. I primarily teach in the Master’s program in Criminology & Criminal Justice, where my focus is in Victimology and diversity.

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  • Greg Scott: IVSA President

    I am the director of the Social Science Research Center and a professor in the department of sociology at DePaul University where I teach courses on substance use and abuse, underground economies, street gangs…

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  • David Herman Jr: IVSA Board Member

    I am a lens-based artist, educator, and scholar whose work explores the relations between the perceptual and the social. My current research is grounded in a belief that the social is inherently political and that visual studies provides distinct opportunities to engage and understand the affective nature of being with difference.

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  • YOLANDA HERNÁNDEZ-ALBÚJAR: IVSA Board Member

    I am a professor at the Universidad Loyola Andalucía, in Seville where I teach courses in Anthropology of Communication, Cultural Anthropology, and Migration.

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  • Susan Hansen: IVSA Board Member

    I am Convenor of the Visual Methods Group and Chair of the Forensic Psychology Research Group at Middlesex University, London. I have a background in ethnomethodology and conversation analysis and a PhD in Social Psychology.

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  • Christine Louveau de la Guigneraye: IVSA Board Member

    I’m associate professor at the University of Evry Paris-Saclay (France), in charge of the Visual and Filmic research focus of the sociological research laboratory (Centre Pierre Naville).

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  • Suezen Salinas: Graduate Student Rep

    In taking images, freezing moments, visual methods, as photography, allows us to discover how rich reality truly is. I discovered visual methods at the end of my undergraduate career, through an opportunity to conduct disaster research, and documenting disparities in storm water infrastructure across underprivileged communities…

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  • Jerome Krase: IVSA Board Member

    Although I am probably much better known as a Sociologist who studies Urban Neighborhoods and much more likely to define myself as an Activist or Public Scholar, almost all of my work has been “visual” in one way or another.

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  • Laura Porterfield: IVSA Treasurer

    Laura Krystal Porterfield, Ph.D. is an urban educator, visualist, and youth culture scholar. Having grown up in El Paso, Texas, Laura is the daughter of two Mississippi transplants who instilled in her the value and promise of higher education.

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  • Alexandra Tilman: IVSA Board Member

    I have a PhD in visual and filmic sociology and I teach at Evry university in France in connection with my dual practice as a filmmaker and sociology researcher.

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  • Gill Golding: IVSA Board Member At Large

    I’m a Visiting Research Fellow within the Centre for Urban and Community Research at Goldsmiths, University of London, Education Director of the Urban Photographers Association, Organiser of the International Urban Photography Summer School and the Competition Organiser for UrbanPhotoFest…

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  • Dr. Gaby David

    I am a researcher and university lecturer. I hold a PhD in visual sociology from the Center for Art History and Theory at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris (EHESS), a Masters in Fine Arts from the University of Paris 8 and Master’s degree in teaching English as a Foreign Language (ToEFL).

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  • Patricia Prieto-Blanco: IVSA Technology Advisor

    I work as a Lecturer in Digital Media Practice at the Sociology department, Lancaster University, UK. I am passionate about all things visual, and especially interested in media practices that involve people interacting with/through images.

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  • Carolina Cambre: IVSA Board Member

    I am Associate Professor (Sociology of Education) at Concordia University, Montreal in Quebec, Canada. My work explores vernacular visual expression asking: How do people produce and direct the visual space. How is the image a doing? What are the social and cultural work/ings of images.

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  • Han Sang Kim

    I am assistant professor of sociology at Ajou University, Suwon, South Korea. My teaching interests include visual sociology, qualitative methods, and sociology of film and media. I have conducted research and written on the themes of film archives, ethics of photographic representation, post/colonial visual culture, and mobilities. My most recent book is Cine-Mobility: Twentieth-Century Transformations in Korea’s Film and Transportation (Harvard University Asia Center, 2022).

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  • Tara Milbrandt: IVSA Board Member

    I discovered visual sociology at a conference in New York City in 2007 and have been a proud member of the IVSA since this time. I am an associate professor of sociology at the University of Alberta’s liberal arts and science campus, Augustana, which is located in central Alberta, Canada. I teach courses in social theory, visual sociology, sociology of community, media and contemporary culture. I am the editor for ‘Elicitations’, the reviews section of the journal ‘Imaginations: Cross-Cultural Image Studies’.

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  • Mariko Smith IVSA Board Member
  • Molly Merryman: IVSA Vice President
  • Greg Scott: IVSA President
  • David Herman Jr: IVSA Board Member
  • YOLANDA HERNÁNDEZ-ALBÚJAR: IVSA Board Member
  • Susan Hansen: IVSA Board Member
  • Christine Louveau de la Guigneraye: IVSA Board Member
  • Suezen Salinas: Graduate Student Rep
  • Jerome Krase: IVSA Board Member
  • Laura Porterfield: IVSA Treasurer
  • Alexandra Tilman: IVSA Board Member
  • Gill Golding: IVSA Board Member At Large
  • Dr. Gaby David
  • Patricia Prieto-Blanco: IVSA Technology Advisor
  • Carolina Cambre: IVSA Board Member
  • Han Sang Kim
  • Tara Milbrandt: IVSA Board Member
  •  

    Visual culture is now the study of how to understand change in a world too enormous to see but vital to imagine.

    Nicholas Mirzoeff

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    Reality changes; in order to represent it, modes of representation must change.

    Bertolt Brecht

  • I believe that we face incredible obstacles in our attempts to see the world. Everything in our nature tries to deny the world around us; to refabricate it in our own image; to reinvent it for our own benefit. And so, it becomes something of a challenge, a task, to recover (or at least attempt to recover) the real world despite all the impediments to that end.

    Errol Morris

  • Before I became a film major, I was very heavily into social science, I had done a lot of sociology, anthropology, and I was playing in what I call social psychology, which is sort of an offshoot of anthropology/sociology – looking at a culture as a living organism, why it does what it does.

    George Lucas

  • So it is my firm belief, that if you want nowadays, to have a clear and distinct communication of your concepts, you have to use synthetic images, no longer words.

    Vilém Flusser

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    The task for sociology is to come to the help of the individual. We have to be in service of freedom. It is something we have lost sight of.

    Zygmunt Bauman

  • Watching a documentary with people hacking their way through some polar wasteland is merely a visual. Actually trying to deal with cold that can literally kill you is quite a different thing.

    Henry Rollins

  • We never really know what’s around the corner when we’re filming – what turn a story will take, what a character will do or say to surprise us, how the events in the world will impact our story.

    Barbara Kopple

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    Every photograph promises more than it delivers and delivers more than it intended.

    Steve Harp

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    For any picture, ask yourself what question or questions it might be answering. Since the picture could answer many, questions, we can decide what question we are interested in.

    Howard Becker

  • Give us adequate images. We lack adequate images. Our civilization does not have adequate images. And I think a civilization is doomed or is going to die out like dinosaurs if it doesn’t develop an adequate language for adequate images.

    Werner Herzog

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    The function of sociology, as of every science, is to reveal that which is hidden.

    Pierre Bourdieu

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    Sometimes one picture is equal to 30 pages of discourse, just as there are things images are completely incapable of communicating.

    William S. Burroughs

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    One advantage of photography is that it’s visual and can transcend language.

    Lisa Kristine

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    If it’s far away, it’s news, but if it’s close at home, it’s sociology.

    James Reston

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    There are dignified stupidities, and there are heroic stupidities, and there is such a thing as stupid stupidities, and that would be a stupid stupidity not to have a camera on board.

    Werner Herzog

  • Photographers learn to interpret photographs in that technical way because they want to understand and use that ‘language’ themselves (just as musicians learn a more technical musical language than the layman needs). Social scientists who want to work with visual materials will have to learn to approach them in this more studious and time-consuming way

    Howard Becker

  • If you want to tell the untold stories, if you want to give voice to the voiceless, you’ve got to find a language. Which goes for film as well as prose, for documentary as well as autobiography. Use the wrong language, and you’re dumb and blind.

    Salman Rushdie

  • You try your hardest to give people their space, but at moments you know you’re capturing their image in ways they may or may not be okay with. It’s that rocking back and forth between respect and betrayal that I feel like is at the heart of the film.

    Kirsten Johnson

#Visualsociology

Worcester Uni Sociology

Some great images shared in this thread about swings for teenagers and adults #VisualSociology #EnvironmentalSociology #UrbanSpaces twitter.com/MakeSpaceforGi…

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