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Jeniffer Bajorek

Dr. Jennifer Bajorek is Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature at Hampshire College (USA). Her publications include a book on Baudelaire, Marx, and Benjamin, Counterfeit Capital (Stanford, 2009); essays on French literature, Continental philosophy, and contemporary art, have appeared in Critical Inquiry, Diacritics, Third Text, and Social Text; and English translations of works of French philosophy, including those by Jacques Derrida, Bernard Stiegler, and Sarah Kofman.

Her writing on photography includes numerous essays on historical and contemporary photography in Africa, which have appeared in Aperture, Autograph ABP (Association of Black Photographers), and History of Photography, as well as art writing and exhibition reviews published both in catalogues and online. In 2010-2011, she was lead curator of Contemporary Africa on Screen (C.A.O.S.) at the South London Gallery.

She is also Founder and Co-Director (with Dr. Erin Haney) of Resolution, an organization focused on expanding access to photography and archives in Africa. Dr. Bajorek’s new book, Unfixed: Photography and Decolonial Imagination in West Africa, exploring the relationship between photography and political imagination in Senegal and Benin in the years immediately leading up to and following independence, is forthcoming from Duke University Press. In the spring of 2019, she will be in residence at the Clark Art Institute at Williams College (USA), in connection with a new research on representations of African migration in contemporary France.

Recent publications:

Bajorek, J. 2019 (forthcoming). Unfixed: Photography and Decolonial Imagination in West Africa (forthcoming, Duke University Press). [Book]

Bajorek, J. 2016. “Beyond the ‘NGO Aesthetic’.” Social Text 127. Vol. 34, No. 2. 89-107. [Article]

Bajorek, J. 2015. “On Color Photography in an Extra-Moral Sense.” Third Text. Vol. 29, No. 3. 221-235. [Article]

Bajorek, J. 2015. “Evocations: Photography and Public Practice.” Wide Angle: Photography and Public Practice. Goethe-Institut South Africa; Wits University Department of Art; Market Photo Workshop; and The Hotel Yeoville Project. Johannesburg: Fourthwall Books. n.p. [Book chapter]

Bajorek, J., co-authored with Erin Haney. 2015. “Vital Signs: 21st-Century Institutions for Photography in Africa.” In The African Photographic Archive: Research and Curatorial Strategies. Ed. Christopher Morton and Darren Newbury. London: Bloomsbury. 215-229. [Book chapter]
Conference papers/presentations

Bajorek, J. 2018. “Broken.” Paper presented at “Photography: The Black Box of History.” Ryerson Image Center, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada. 16-17 March.

Bajorek, J. 2018. “The Pleasures of State-Sponsored Photography.” Presentation to the “Beyond France” seminar, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA. 23 February.

Bajorek, J. 2017. “Independence Day: Conversation with Artist Maryam Jafri.” Presentation to the CARC workshop, New York University, New York, New York, USA. 8 December.

Bajorek, J. 2017. “Manipulated Photography and Printed Objects in the Work of Kelani Abass.” Paper presented on the panel, “Handling/Manipulating Photographs in Africa.” ACASA Triennial, University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana. 11 August.

Bajorek, J. 2016. “Decolonizing the Archive.” Invited contribution to a roundtable discussion of an exhibition of work by artist Maryam Jafri, “The Day After.” Blackwood Gallery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada. 10 February.