Photographs are but one link in a potentially endless chain of reduplication; themselves duplicates (of both their objects and, in a sense, their negatives), they are also subject to further duplication, either through the procedures of printing or as objects of still other photographs.
Representation, then, is not - nor can it be - neutral; it is an act - indeed the founding act - of power in our culture.
As an allegorical art, then, photography would represent our desire to fix the transitory, the ephemeral, in a stable and stabilizing image.
The postmodernist critique of representation undermines the referential status of visual imagery, its claim to represent reality as it really is - either the appearance of things or some ideal order behind or beyond appearance.
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