Black and white press photograph of three men inspecting the intact bookshelves of the bombed library while the floor is covered in debris and the remains of the fallen ceiling, now open to the air. Holland House library after an air raid

Holland House, Kensington, London following air raid. Published in The Times, 1940.

This research area is concerned with global visual culture and its relationship with politics, history, and cultural memory in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

It brings together researchers exploring the latest methodological approaches to the study of photography, film, and the visual arts to exchange knowledge and foster critical understanding of the social role and political relevance of images in everyday life. Aligned with the CMNH’s ethos, this strand addresses marginalised geographies, silenced communities, and forgotten histories in local and global frameworks. 

Some common themes explored by our members include memory cultures and politics; decolonizing the photographic archive; popular images, overlooked traditions, and alternative forms of art in relation to politics and life experience; histories of diaspora communities and identities; memories of conflict, trauma, and resistance; interconnected histories and representations of British transatlantic slavery and Empire; spatial memories of the material environment. 

Research leads: Uschi Klein and Julia Winckler

Current PhD students: Ilenia Atzori; Kamal Badhey; Yvonne Canham-Spence; Marina Castledine; Isabel Ferreira; Aine Mckenny; Anna Sephton.