The Holy Ground: Liminality in the Photograph, the Corpse, and Physical Space

By Amy Tudor.

Published by The Humanities Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Liminality, the state of being “in between,” is the common element in the corpse, the photograph, and physical space, and where the liminality doubles and redoubles – as in a photograph of a dead body or the introduction of a single death (or thousands) into a physical place – so do the connotations of reverence and separateness (the sacred) or repulsion (the profane). The photograph of the corpse or of a physical space where deaths have occurred is, in fact, the most potent example of liminality and its ability to “imprint” the sacred and the profane, all three undefined states frozen in the camera’s and its Operator’s gaze. This particular genre is, in fact, less centered on its subject of corpses and death than it is on capturing this liminal state, its “take” of the rupture of past and present, life and death, individual and his or her physical space.

Keywords: Philosophy, Bioethics, Anthropology, Fine-art Photography

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 8, Issue 6, pp.143-156. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.269MB).

Dr. Amy Tudor

University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky, USA


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