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Before Judgment. Critiquing Imagery and Style of 'Good' and 'Evil'

Type: Conferences & Symposia [View all]
Posted by: Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max-Planck-Institut
Deadline: Mon, May 29th, 2017

Before Judgment. Critiquing Imagery and Style of ’Good’ and ’Evil’
Conference organized by the Minerva Research Group "The Nomos of Images. Manifestation and Iconology of Law"

Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max-Planck-Institut
Florence, 29-30 May 2017

An uncanny play of prefixes to the German term ’Urteil’ (judgment or adjudication) mirrors the common observation that every act of sentencing (’Verurteilen’) is preceded by prejudice (’Vorurteilen’). Judicial judgments are as much shaped by images and forms as by language. Hence, legal norms themselves can be apprehended as artefacts of social and cultural practices, which not just regulate actions, but co-create the identity of subjects and communities acting through them.

The conference analyzes the place and significance of visual media in determining the interplay between norm and deviation: How is "evil" visualized and framed in normative terms? In what ways are "good" and "evil" manifested as opposing forces and by which means do these images – directly or indirectly – refer to perceptions of legality?

Ranging from demonically imbued images, figurations of "evil" (devil, demon, monster, tyrant) and the techniques of its exorcism (apotropaics) to visual strategies of criminalisation, from the forensic commensurability of representations, proportion and dimensionality to its unrepresentability and banality, from the figures of judicial language to the status of images as witnesses, the question of "evil" will serve as a leitmotif for reconsidering the relationship of society, legal practice and visual culture.


Posted on Wed, May 3rd, 2017
Expires on Mon, May 29th, 2017

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