In the 1990s, when visual culture was beginning to gain currency as a field of study, the art theory journal October published responses to a questionnaire on the subject. Many echoed the journal's provocative statement that visual studies was going ‘to produce subjects for the next stage of globlized capital’ (October No.77, 1996, p.25). The fear had been that up and coming generations would be prone to a diminished critical understanding of images, and worse would likely develop an ever-greater appetite for their consumption. It was an unfortunate perspective, and one that does not sit well with many in the field, who consider visual culture to be rooted in political and cultural critique. Yet, it reveals a persistent tension that exists between theoretical and practical pursuits of the image.