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Art and epistemic injustice: Ursula Biemann's remote sensing and black sea files

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journal contribution
posted on 10.08.2016 by Kathryn Brown
Having regard to two video works produced by Ursula Biemann, Remote Sensing (2001) and The Black Sea Files (2005), this article examines the portrayal of female displacement and migration in the context of Miranda Fricker’s recent discussion of ‘epistemic injustice’. Focusing on ways in which the videos demonstrate instances of testimonial injustice, it is argued that Biemann’s work requires audiences to broaden their conception of the circumstances in which such injustice might arise. The discussion shows that Remote Sensing and The Black Sea Files do not just illuminate the distinctive harm of testimonial injustice, but also deepen current debates in analytical philosophy about the ways in which social pressures, customs, and power structures impact on the provision and receipt of testimony. Instead of viewing the exercise of prejudice as the trigger for testimonial injustice, Biemann’s works show that such injustice can arise when listeners fail to have regard to the background socio-economic conditions that shape the context in which testimony is given and received. By self-consciously locating her works in a network of image circulation, Biemann also raises questions about the reliability of moving images that seek to illuminate testimonial injustice at the intersection of art and documentary.

History

School

  • The Arts, English and Drama

Department

  • Arts

Published in

Art and the Public Sphere

Volume

3

Issue

1

Pages

45 - 62

Citation

BROWN, K., 2014. Art and epistemic injustice: Ursula Biemann's remote sensing and black sea files. Art and the Public Sphere, 3(1), pp. 45-62.

Publisher

© Intellect

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Acceptance date

13/01/2015

Publication date

2014

Notes

This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Art and the Public Sphere and the definitive published version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/aps.3.1.45_1

ISSN

2042-793X

Language

en

Exports