Visual Media Production in Eastern Europe


At the junction of economic and cultural history, this section researches the producers of visual media in the multi-ethnic regions of Eastern Europe around 1900—for the semantics of the visual worlds around ethnicity in Eastern Europe cannot be separated from their production, distribution and marketing.

Postkarte Hucul i Podgórzanin.
Hucul i Podgórzanin. Kolomya: Nakladem J. Orensteina, o.J. In: BI, Slg. E.K., Nr. 5.2.3.

Selling Ethnicity: Visual Media Production in Eastern Europe Around 1900 Between Nationalism and the Economy
As the »visual age« dawned around 1900, Eastern Europe too developed new lines of business and income opportunities: More and more people began to earn their money by producing and distributing printed pictures, especially in the form of picture postcards. This new visuality conjoined with the nationalism and conceptions of a world ordered by ethnic groups that were then gaining virulent traction. Printing turned the depiction of so-called »ethnic types« into part of »visual culture for the masses« and thus undergirded contemporary perceptions of ethnic or national groups. The project examines the so-far neglected subject of the economic contingency of contemporary constructions of images of the self and other in the multi-ethnic regions of Eastern Europe. It combines approaches from the cultural-history inspired economic history, from visual history as well as from newer research into processes of nationalising and ethnicising.

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