AUB Libraries Online Exhibits

Populism, Critique and Bricolage: "Carnivalesque" subversions

The power of an image, and of posters in particular, lies in their ability to distill defining events and complex social and cultural dynamics and realities through a simple medium: a drawing and a few words. In fact, posters malleability and great power of expression has lent them to be used equally effectively by oppositional groups as well as by deeply entrenched structures, power institutions, and governing regimes. Posters can bluntly say one thing to mean the exact opposite, and because of their visual nature, they can embody layers of complex meanings, represent differing perspectives, and indeed embody, express and represent the contradictions of our socio-political and cultural Arab human condition! Bricolage, tongue in cheek, bold and serious graphics, texts and iconography express all at once our complex modern realities, and constitute a rich subject of study for academics and media scholars.