'Demonstrative evidence': A genealogy of the racial iconography of forensic art and illustration

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Abstract

This essay stages a critique of the unacknowledged racialising visual regimes that inform forensic pathology's typical body charts. In order to disclose these unacknowledged regimes, I stage a genealogy of the racialising iconography that continues to shape forensic pathology's visual texts. In drawing attention to the racialising visual conventions that constitute the contemporary production of caucacentric forensic body charts, I attempt to disrupt the scientifico-objective status of these visual artefacts in order to underscore their ideological effects. By focusing on the ontological/ epistemological split between the corporeality of native informants and white knowledge workers, I underscore the white medico-legal profession's historical transmuting of other bodies into objects of knowledge. I conclude by outlining the discursive effects of presenting forensic pathology's caucacentric body charts as demonstrative evidence within the court of law.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-320
Number of pages34
JournalLaw and Critique
Volume15
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2004

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