This paper analyses the representation of soldiers and combatants in Afghanistan in photographs in British broadsheet online newspapers between 1 Jan 2010 and 1 Jan 2011. It shows how particular kinds of participants, settings and actions are foregrounded and backgrounded, which reflects specific ideologies in Britain. The study is carried out by a method of analysing visual images through the use of content analysis. It reviews the results of counting the frequency of visual elements within a particularly defined sample of photographs. Therefore, categories were developed in relation to theoretical concerns in the context of the visual portrayal of soldiers and military issues in contemporary Western society. Methodologically, the chapter draws on Weber, 1990; Ball and Smith, 1992; Lutz and Collins, 1993; Slater, 1998; Krippendorf, 2002; and Rose, 2007. It raises questions about representativeness, absences (or visual invisibility), compositional interpretation, the method’s inability to consider all sites of meaning-making, as well as its reductionist nature. The aim is to propose a critical visual methodology which can serve as a framework for this type of image analysis in social sciences.
|Title of host publication||Visual Communication (Series: Handbooks of Communication Science)|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2012|
- visual content analysis