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Representation, Exemplification, Vestigium: the Problem of Presence in Image Studies
Sharopova Nigina Rustamovna

Post-Graduate Student of the School of Philosophy at National Research University 'Higher School of Economics', Senior Researcher at Institute of Philosophy of the Russian Academy of Sciences

109451, Russia, g. Moscow, bul. Perervinskii, 8, kv. 232



The article is devoted to the problem of reference in image studies. The relationship between images and their reflection is one of the key problems in this field of research, especially because, as the author of the research notes, one of the possible views on the genealogy of image directly relates to such phenomenon as estrangement. Referring to Hans Belting's researches, the author of the article notes that the origin of an image itself is related to the phenomenon of estrangement of the image from its reflection and fixation of an image in another material medium, on the one hand, and preservation of that relationship with its reflection, on the other hand. To clarify these complex relations, the author applies three concepts, representation, exemplification and vestigium (trace). The first concept is used according to the definition offered by a modern researcher G. Bohm and Hans-Georg Gadamer in his 'Truth and Method'. According to their interpretation, representation is understood as intensification and extension of a referent's presence. Then, the author refers to the term 'exemplification' as it was first introduced by Henry Nelson Goodman as a new type of a sign. Having demonstrated, that none of these strategies fully explains the phenomenon of estrangement, the author refers to the third concept of vestigium (trace) of St. Augustine. Unlike the first two concepts, vestigium is described as the process of the denial from an image's own features which cannot be said about a sign and thus cannot be estranged from the presence it is conveyed through. However, this concept offered by Augustine has not been of great interest for researchers so far. It does not have a translation in Russian and has never been used in image studies. This is what makes the novelty of the present research. 

Gottfried Böhm

Gottfried Böhm in 2015

January 23, 1920 (age 98)Offenbach, Hessen


Pritzker Prize


Neviges Pilgrimage Church, VelbertBensberg City Hall

Böhm's 1968 Iglesia Youth Center Library, Cologne.

Böhm's pilgrimage church, Velbert(then Neviges).

Gottfried Böhm

Keywords: Hans-Georg Gadamer, mimesis, image studies, vestigium, reference, representation, sign, image, St. Augustine, Henry Nelson Goodman



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This article written in Russian. You can find full text of article in Russian here .

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