Visual Interventions and the “Crises in Representation” in Environmental Anthropology

Researching Environmental Justice in a Hungarian Romani Neighbourhood

Participatory visual research, or “visual interventions” (Pink 2007), allow environmental anthropologists to respond to three different “crises of representation”: (1) the critique of ethnographic representation presented by postmodern, postcolonial, and feminist anthropologists; (2) the constructivist critique of nature and the environment; and (3) the “environmental justice” critique demanding representation for the environmental concerns of communities of colour. Participatory visual research integrates community members in the process of staking out a research agenda, conducting fieldwork and interpreting data, and communicating and applying research findings. Our project used the Photovoice methodology to generate knowledge and documentation related to environmental injustices faced by Roma in Hungary. I discuss the promise and limitations of “visual interventions” as a pathway leading applied environmental anthropologists beyond the three “crises in representation.”

Released: Replika 100, 167–189.