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Visual Diplomacy: Reflections on Diplomatic Spectacle and Cinematic Thinking
The Hague Journal of Diplomacy (2018)
  • Costas M. Constantinou
In engaging the visual aspects of public diplomacy, this article has three objectives.
First, it introduces the notion of visual diplomacy  — the ways and means by which
images are used by plural diplomatic actors to transmit ideas to audiences, producing
and circulating meanings that serve particular purposes, with the aim of influencing,
shaping and transforming relations between actors and across publics. Second,
it examines how the spectacle of diplomacy is enacted by focusing on a particular
case of commissioned cinematography of Cypriot public diplomacy. Third, it engages
visual diplomacy cinematically, employing Deleuze’s insights on the cinematic apparatus,
and by producing an essay film, The Blessed Envoy , linked to this article. The
film reuses, through creative montage, nine official documentaries of Cypriot public
diplomacy, revealing the key narratives and hidden transcripts that the visual material
disseminates, thus encouraging a reflexive focus on the use of imagery in diplomacy.
  • public diplomacy – visual culture – cinematic apparatus – essay film – postcoloniality – Cyprus
Publication Date
Citation Information
Costas M. Constantinou. "Visual Diplomacy: Reflections on Diplomatic Spectacle and Cinematic Thinking" The Hague Journal of Diplomacy Vol. 13 (2018)
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