test photograph

Gettyversion

This article in progress focuses on a single photograph: the depiction of mannequins propped up in the desert during France’s third atomic test in the Sahara on 27 December 1960. Labeled “Nuclear Dummies” by AFP/Getty Images, the photograph has become an emblem of the exposure of military and civilian bodies to radiation during the years of France’s nuclear weapons testing in Algeria.

What are the political meanings and effects of this recurrent “misrepresentation”? How does “Nuclear Dummies” operate as evidence, testimony, and allegory in the history and memory of French nuclear imperialism?