Narrating, Questioning, and Reimagining the Past through Textbook Images




memory, image, contemporary art, textbook


Many studies on textbooks have already highlighted their role as an artifact that construes knowledge and sensibilities, serving beyond the mere record of information. In this sense, it is important to look not only at the verbal texts, but also at the images disseminated in the textbooks since these images are important vectors in the establishment of a visual memory of the past. For decades, textbooks have been used for dissemination of powerful images, such as engravings by travelers who have visited Brazil, and historical paintings produced in the 19th century. As part of a movement of critical revisionism of Brazilian history, several contemporary visual artists have looked at these iconographies and have proposed new readings oriented toward construing new visualities. The aim of this study is to understand how textbooks also compose this debate since they have attracted the attention of some Brazilian visual artists, who are driven to review and question a certain visual culture that has been reified in their pages. Thus, the study attempts to map their criticisms and to analyze the potentiality of including this contemporary artistic production in textbooks.



How to Cite

Caldeira, A. P. S. (2024). Narrating, Questioning, and Reimagining the Past through Textbook Images. Práticas Da História. Journal on Theory, Historiography and Uses of the Past, (17), 145–182.