Learning more about Photovoice

Photovoice is a methodology that combines photography with grassroots social action. Photovoice was developed in the mid-1990s by Caroline Wang and her colleagues, based in part on concepts from Paulo Freire’s pedagogy related to critical consciousness, feminist theory, and empowerment. Photovoice is just one of many participatory visual methodologies in which visual images are created as part of the research process.

Since the mid-1990s, Photovoice has been used to explore a diversity of public health and social justice concerns ranging from infectious disease epidemics and chronic health problems to assessing the effects of war and mapping of community resources. Caroline Wang says: “Photovoice is a method that enables people to define for themselves and others, including policy makers, what is worth remembering and what needs to be changed.”

Table from Hergenrather et al, 2009

Read more

Castledan, H., Gavin, T., Huu-ay-aht First Nation. (2008). Modifying Photovoice for community-based participatory Indigenous research. Social Science and Medicine, 66: 1393-1405.

Catalani, C. and Minkler, M. (2010). Photovoice: A Review of the Literature in Health and Public Health. Health Education and Behavior, 37: 424-451. DOI: 10.1177/1090198109342084

Gubrium, A. (2009). Digital Storytelling: An Emergent Method for Health Promotion Research and Practice. Health Promotion Practice, 10: 186-191. DOI: 10.1177/1524839909332600

Hergenrather, K., Rhodes, S.D., Bardhoshi, G. (2009). Photovoice as Community-Based Participatory Research: A Qualitative Review. American Journal of Health Behavior, 33(6): 686-698.

A Few Canadian Photovoice Projects