Today@Sam Article

Diversity And Culture In Higher Education: A Photo Exhibition

Nov. 21, 2019
SHSU Media Contact: Wes Hamilton

PeatonCoverDoctoral scholars in Paul Eaton’s Diversity and Culture in Higher Education recently displayed and discussed a curated exhibition of original photographic images in the Lowman Student Center. This exhibition is part of a term-long project for the course as each student submitted 11 images over the term and selected two images to display.

“What is powerful about this project is the ability to think creatively and to learn and engage in an important conversation about diversity and culture in higher education,” said Eaton, assistant professor in the College of Education.

Each week, scholars were asked to submit one original image that related to some issue in the course content, demonstrating critical integration of course material (readings, multimedia, in-class discussions, theoretical concepts, or creating individual/systemic change). The images could be directly related to higher education, or more symbolic, abstract, artistic, or metaphoric. Though students had to take original photographs, they could use filters, mash or mix photos together, or be otherwise creative in their approach to the images they captured.

Peaton500“This project had multiple inspirations,” Eaton said. “Initially, I was moved by photographer and critical social commentator Teju Cole’s book “Known and Strange Things.” He discusses how photographic images can shock us into a new state of consciousness and action. Photo-elicitation research, a growing area of work in qualitative inquiry, also inspired this project.”

During the first week of class, Assistant Professor of Photography Emily Peacock gave scholars in the course a tutorial on taking photos and images, using filters, and other tips for digital photography. Then students were off, snapping images and submitting titles and captions to coincide with each week of the term.

These photos will remain on display in the College of Education throughout the upcoming spring semester.



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