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Visual Anthropology: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats

by Gareth Davey
Visual Anthropology: Published in cooperation with the Commission on Visual Anthropology ()
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This article briefly examines visual anthropology's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, in the form of a SWOT analysis. The aim is to comment on the subdiscipline's current status, raise awareness of challenges faced and identify possibilities for the future. Visual anthropology's strengths and opportunities include its increased acceptance by mainstream anthropology; a diverse and interdisciplinary research agenda; synergy between academic and applied perspectives; and the potential of new visual methods. Weaknesses and threats include difficulty defining the subdiscipline; limited collaboration (for many research articles are single-authored); and dominance of American scholars. The implications of these factors for the future of visual anthropology are also discussed.

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