Visual Ethnography

The act of healing involves a large range of elements dealing with emotion, corporality and materiality which are difficult to grasp, convey and analyse solely through written text and for which cinema and photography has proven an especial affinity. Instances of these are the choreographic movement of bodies during rituals, on the performative power of spoken words and music during consultations, or on the importance of colours in creating sensory environments. Images can capture (and reproduce) these dimensions of the healing process in a particular powerful and immediate way.  Visual techniques and visual language prompt us to turn our attention towards new aspects of the healing process. They make us see differently. They may also show us the transformation of social practices during the transnational movement
It is for these reasons that visuality will be integrated into this research network in three different, although intimately interwoven, ways: 

  • Audio-visual devices (namely photography and cinema) will be used for the ethnographic study of healing processes; 
  • New audio-visual outcomes will be produced either out of the ethnographic research of the network members or by using previous archive –our aim being to use image as a mode of writing and dissemination of knowledge; 
  • The website will reunite ethnographic films and photographs about the healing process with the objective to spark a debate about the theoretical, methodological and ethical issues involved in the act of filming healing processes.
                                                                                                                                                               - Roger Canals