The Politics of Appearing

Popular Culture Association of Australia and New Zealand (PopCAANZ)
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Peer Reviewed Proceedings of the 7th Annual Conference, 2016, pp. 127 - 138
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Whilst addressing a series of photographic portraits, this article photography, examines the status of Arabic appearance in a predominantly portraiture, Anglo culture like Australia. In 2016 young bearded men of appearance, race Arabic ‘appearance’ were invited to pose for a series titled You Look Like a Terrorist. The young men wore beards not due to religious or cultural requirements nor as a statement of political allegiance but rather as a style choice. It is interesting to consider this style choice in terms of visual appearance. This article contextually analyses these portraits alongside those of ‘jihadis’ represented in the media and the contemporary ‘hipster’ amongst others. I ask whether young Arabic men in the West can enjoy the same style choices as their Anglo counterparts when in today’s ‘terrorized’ society they represent the foreign and terrifying Other.
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