Today I started looking for info on the net about why people keep photos. There’s a lot of thoughts out there on this topic, for example:
However, more academic discussion about the underlying reasons were harder to find. There is a site which, among other things, summarises aspects of “The Psychology of photography” which is relevant but not exactly spot on:
I found a piece in the Psychology Today site which describes a paper by philosopher Robert Hopkins of the University of Sheffield on “what’s special about photographs?”
I also came across a very detailed presentation about hoarding which seems to have some sort of relationship to the question:
I think I’ll have a more detailed read of the above links and then maybe contact somebody working in the area to try and have a brief discussion on the subject.