Title

Capturing shadows : on photography, causation, and absences

Document Type

Journal article

Source Publication

Australasian Journal of Philosophy

Publication Date

2017

Volume

95

Issue

2

First Page

256

Last Page

269

Publisher

Routledge

Keywords

photography, causation, shadows, absences

Abstract

Many photographs seem to be images of absences: for instance, a photograph of a shadow seems to be an image of an absence, as shadows are plausibly thought of as being absences of light. Absence photography is puzzling, however, as, first, it is a common idea that photographs can only be images of things that have caused them, and, second, it is unclear whether absences can cause anything. In this paper, I look at various ways to unravel the puzzle. Along the way, I also hope to cast some light on the idea that photography is a causal medium.

DOI

10.1080/00048402.2016.1197957

Print ISSN

00048402

E-ISSN

14716828

Funding Information

The research has received funding from The Swedish Research Council [Dnr 350-2012-6582].

Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2016 Australasian Association of Philosophy. Access to external full text or publisher's version may require subscription.

Additional Information

Ancestors of this paper were presented at The London Aesthetics Forum; at the universities of Uppsala, Glasgow, Stockholm, and Lingnan; and at the workshop ‘Philosophy and Photography’ in Ovronnaz.

Full-text Version

Publisher’s Version

Recommended Citation

Pettersson, M. (2016). Capturing shadows: On photography, causation, and absences. Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 95(2), 256-269. doi: 10.1080/00048402.2016.1197957