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Why do photographs interest writers, especially autobiographical writers? Ever since their invention, photographs have featured - as metaphors, as absent inspirations, and latterly as actual objects - in written texts. In autobiographical texts, their presence has raised particularly acute questions about the rivalry between these two media, their relationship to the 'real', and the nature of the constructed self. In this timely study, based on the most recent developments in the fields of photography theory, self-writing and photo-biography, Akane Kawakami offers an intriguing narrative which runs from texts containing metaphorical photographs through ekphrastic works to phototexts. Her choice of Marcel Proust, Herve Guibert, Annie Ernaux and Gerard Mace provides unusual readings of works seldom considered in this context, and teases out surprising similarities between unexpected conjunctions.