chapter  24
10 Pages

CULTURAL SNIPER: PASSING/OUT

I‘ve found in looking back that for a lot of my life I’ve had to pretend that I was somebody I wasn’t. I had to pass myself off. I’ve been able to cross between groups very easily, but never belong to them. I’m talking about coming from a working-class background and ‘becoming’ middle-class. My subjectivity is very split up between my early life and my later life. This became very clear to me after five years in therapy where it seemed to me that I still wasn’t able to talk about class with any safety. I then realized that I hadn’t been able to talk about it with any safety in lots of other places, most particularly within higher education unless I happened to be somewhere where there were Marxists. Certainly, within the developing discourses of photographic theory I haven’t seen a strong thread emerge which made it safe to speak. But if your history is one of class conflict, it will not go away. In my work around phototherapy and self-portraiture, class has begun to be foregrounded much more. I have a verbal language, but not a visual one yet….