Programme: Producing Image Activism after the Arab Uprisings

This two-day symposium in Stockholm aims to explore the different facets of a growing global activist image industry with a particular focus on the Arab world. Recent popular and activist mobilizations across the region have been supported by a practice of grassroots documentation on an unprecedented scale, making networked digital cameras integral to the conduct and communication of contentious political action.  The wave of images shared through social media and shown on television of masses of people reclaiming public spaces, announcing new social priorities, and enacting political regime change powerfully accentuated the generative potential of mobile cameras to remake the world. Yet while digitally networked cameras present new opportunities for freedom of expression and for enacting justice, they also pose significant new challenges and vulnerabilities.

In consequence, we have recently witnessed the growth of groups, organizations, and institutions intent on producing image activism, working to re-direct grassroots contentious image-making into more secure, structured and professionalized formats. The aim is often to make rebellious imagery operational for – and marketable within - distinct domains, such as the news industry, the justice system, the film circuit, and the art world. This symposium will provide a forum in which scholars and practitioners with first-hand knowledge and regional expertise collaborate to explore a number of key issues in the mediation of contentious image practices across the Arab world and beyond.


The symposium is organized by the project " Resistance-by-recording: the visuality and visibility of contentious political action in Egypt, Palestine and Syria".

Professor Kari Andén-Papadopoulos, Principal investigator, Stockholm university
Dr. Mark Westmoreland, Project member, Leiden university
Postdoc Peter Snowdon, Leiden university


Funded in collaboration between Riksbankens Jubileumsfond and The Leading Research Environment at the Department of Media Studies, Stockholm University. More information will be posted on this web site, in our event calendar and on Facebook as we get closer to the event.

Free admission

Free admission. Open to the public. No pre-registration necessary.


Bio Victor. Seats: 364.