Beth Buggenhagen writes about visual culture, value, gender, and Islam in contemporary West Africa. Her scholarly work emerges from her long-term ethnographic research in Senegal since the early 1990s. She has traced the global trade networks of Senegalese Muslims by focusing on the transmission of enduring social value through gifts of cloth in family ceremonies and religious offerings to Muslim clergy.
Combining research on photography’s past in Senegal and contemporary lens based artists who are pushing the parameters of portraiture in exciting new directions, Beth Buggenhagen is currently working on a book, Photography Beyond the Frame: Family Portraiture in Muslim Senegal.
What are the cultural politics of posing for and displaying portraits, keeping albums, viewing magazines, and creating contemporary visual art?
Research + Teaching Interests
- circulation and value; material and visual culture; photography; gender and Islam; Senegalese diaspora in the U.S.
- circulation and value; material and visual culture; photography; gender and Islam