Using photographs in interpreting cultural and symbolic meaning: a reflection on photographs of the Korean Association for Government Accounting

Ahn, P. and Jacobs, K. (2018) Using photographs in interpreting cultural and symbolic meaning: a reflection on photographs of the Korean Association for Government Accounting. Accounting Forum, 42(1), pp. 142-152. (doi:10.1016/j.accfor.2017.08.002)

Ahn, P. and Jacobs, K. (2018) Using photographs in interpreting cultural and symbolic meaning: a reflection on photographs of the Korean Association for Government Accounting. Accounting Forum, 42(1), pp. 142-152. (doi:10.1016/j.accfor.2017.08.002)

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Abstract

Building on a sociological tradition of using photographs as a methodology, we suggest that accounting researchers more fully utilize photographs to understand accounting actors’ everyday lives. While most accounting studies have focused on the photographic imagery in published documents, such as corporate annual reports, a few authors found photographs can highlight how physical artefacts can deliver symbolic messages. We explored photographs drawn from the Korean Association for Government Accounting (KAGA) to illustrate how social actors used physical artefacts. To guide our analysis, we relied on Bourdieu’s theorization of how physical artefacts reflect forms of capital. We argue that the use of photographs as a methodology provides a deeper insight into the cultural and social meanings of physical artefacts as a form of language open to multiple interpretations by both the author and the reader.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ahn, Dr Paul
Authors: Ahn, P., and Jacobs, K.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Accounting and Finance
Journal Name:Accounting Forum
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0155-9982
ISSN (Online):1467-6303
Published Online:05 September 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd.
First Published:First published in Accounting Forum 42(1): 142-152
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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