ERIC Number: ED393426
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993
Reference Count: N/A
From Text to Television: Hermeneutic Textualism and the Challenge of Visual Technology in the Teaching of History.
The history of mass communications suggests that the manipulation of visual imagery can have as powerful an effect on human behavior as the manipulation of the written word. Recent warnings about a "hidden curriculum" incorporated in the use of instructional technology indicate that multimedia techniques will not escape the controversy about the kinds of social values the schools are supposed to inculcate. Reasons for the scant use of illustrations in early school texts point toward an ideology of literacy and textuality that was at the center of common school education in the prephotographic age. Nineteenth century hermeneutics, unlike its post-modern version, emphasized that the author's intent determined the meaning of a text and that its essential meaning remained unified and indivisible. During the Civil War, public demand for pictorial images stimulated the rise of illustration use; photography, with its power of realism and natural replication, replaced engravings. The advent of photography coincided with the professionalization of history. However, the preference for artwork over photography that remained in the texts suggested that historians persisted in the desire to control the reaction of the reader. In the past decade, historians have been responding to the challenge of visual technology. Historians and teachers working with visual images, especially photographs, television, and film, need to develop a set of basic criteria for interpreting visual images and to alert students to the inherent biases of these formats. (Contains 47 references.) (AEF)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Visual Imagery
Note: In: Verbo-Visual Literacy: Understanding and Applying New Educational Communication Media Technologies. Selected Readings from the Symposium of the International Visual Literacy Association (Delphi, Greece, June 25-29, 1993); see IR 017 742.