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Allen wears black rimmed glasses and a fedora hat. He has a white beard and stands in front of his office bookcase.

Allen Feldman

Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication

Media, Culture, and Communication


Allen Feldman, a pioneer in the ethnography of violence, the body and the senses, is the author of Archives of the Insensible: of War, Photopolitics and Dead Memory (University of Chicago, 2015) and Formations of Violence: the Narrative of the Body and Political Terror in Northern Ireland (1991).

Feldman is a cultural anthropologist who has conducted ethnographic research on the politicization of the gaze, the body and the senses in Northern Ireland, South Africa and the post 9/11 global war of terror. His research and teaching interests include visual culture, political aesthetics, political animality, and practice-led media research.

Of his work Avital Ronell says “Archives of the Insensible will become the go-to work to help us confront unmanageably traumatizing realities by which we are seized and the cutthroat politics of our era.” And Talal Asad writes “Archives of the Insensible is a remarkable diagnosis of our time, tracing with great subtlety the multiple ways in which violence is transformed into justice and justice gives birth to destruction.”

Selected Publications

  • Archives of Insensible; of War, Photopolitics and Dead Memory (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2015)
  • Éamonn O’Doherty and the Gaze of Common Places, Field Day Review, 9, 2013, A special issue dedicated to Derry and environs in celebration of Derry/Londonderry City of Culture 2013. (link)
  • The Disputation of Ashraf Salim: Apophatic Sovereignty Before the Law at Guantanamo, Cultural Studies, Fall 2012, DOI:10.1080/09502386.2012.733172 (link)
  • "Tracks on the Anthropological Machine. In The Name of Humanity: the Government of Threat and Care, eds. Ticktin and Feldman. (Duke UP, 2009)
  • "The Structuring Enemy and Archival War." Proceedings of the Modern Language Association, Vol 124, no.4, 2009.
  • "The Actuarial Gaze: From, 9/11 to Abu Ghraib." Cultural Studies, Vol. 19, No. 2 March 2005.
  • "Memory Theaters, Virtual Witnessing, and the Trauma Aesthetic." Biography an Interdisciplinary Quarterly, 27 Winter, 2004.


Media, Culture, and Communication

Our media studies programs train agile researchers of a shifting media landscape. Learn to analyze media and technology in its cultural, social, and global contexts.

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War as Media

This course examines the proposition that contemporary war should be understood as media. Was has become mediatized and media has been militarized. This course treats war and political violence as communicative acts and technologies and focuses on how they shape our understanding and experience of landscape, vision, body, time and memory.
Course #
MCC-UE 1351
Media, Culture, and Communication