Roland Barthes, La Chambre claire: note sur la photographie [Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography]

Graham Allen (University College Cork)
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La Chambre claire

, published in English as

Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography

(trans. Richard Howard, New York: Hill and Wang, 1981), is the last book by Barthes to be published during his lifetime. At once a theoretical examination of the nature of photography,

Camera Lucida

is also a highly personal work of mourning. Barthes's mother, Henriette Barthes, died on October 25th 1977, and Barthes, who had lived with her for most of his life, lost his only permanent source of love. The work of mourning is a central feature of

Camera Lucida

and so cannot be missed by its readers. It should also be remembered, however, that as a gay man, the death of his mother (his father died before Barthes was a year old) implied a particular kind of loss for Barthes, as is apparent in his description…

2502 words

Citation: Allen, Graham. "La Chambre claire: note sur la photographie". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 September 2002 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=10352, accessed 15 June 2024.]

10352 La Chambre claire: note sur la photographie 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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