Competing Perspectives

Figures of Image Control (Annual Conference 2017)

Ort: Bibliothek des Internationalen Kollegs Morphomata, Weyertal 59 (Rückgebäude, 3. Etage), 50937 Köln

Kontakt: Asuman Lätzer-Lasar

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Autobiographies and self portraits can be under- stood as figures of image control that try to express and secure a person’s reputation for contemporary and future generations. However, there have always been competing perspectives between self-descriptions and descriptions of oneself by others. It is this interplay that deter- mines the current effects and the lasting impact of self-fashionings – and produces the distinction between “Dichtung und Wahrheit” (facts and fiction), between illusion and reality. Our annual conference thus questions the cultural, historical, and medial figures of these distinctions in case studies from antiquity to the present: that is, by comparing the “Res Gestae” of the Emperor Augustus, his portraits, the self-portrayals in minted coins and in the biographies of Augustus by Nicolaus of Damascus or Suetonius, as well as in the daily competition for “Likes or Dislikes” in the self-representations on Facebook, Youtube, or Instagram (among others).