Tommorow at 7 PM in the Henry’s auditorium, UW Assistant Professor of Anthropology Daniel Hoffman will be giving a lecture at the Henry on teaching difficult content as curriculum. As Jen Graves noted several weeks ago, the Henry was very focused on war through exhibitions An-My Lê: Small Wars and Kim Jones: A Retrospective.
Indeed, the University Art Institute events occuring over the last several months have been aimed at raising questions through visual representations of the Vietnam War and the war in Iraq, during a time when the physical images of the war we are currently involved in are limited in an unprecedented way. Professor Hoffman’s lecture approches the subject in terms of ways to discuss war with students, which is particularly relevant considering how talking about the conflict in Iraq isn’t consistently supported, much less advocated for, by school administrations.
An-My Lê. Small Wars: Explosion. 1999–2002. Gelatin silver print. Courtesy of Murray Guy Gallery, New York.
Professor Hoffman’s perspective will also come from his experiences as a photojournalist in Africa and the Balkins, as well as his recent research project The Mano River Sketches. For The Mano River Sketchers, he is creating a new aesthetic to document his experiences working with members of the militias in this violent area located between Sierra Leone and Liberia.
While many of the past University Art Institute discussions and panels have been limted to Southeast Asian scholars, Professor Hoffman’s link to warfare in Africa should provide a fresh look at the topics of the Institute.