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The Photograph

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Kelsey Smith

on 5 October 2012

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Transcript of The Photograph

McLuhan Says... How have our views on certain eras, events, and people been sculpted by photography? Journalism - one of the most despised photographers Paparazzi Photographs of others in pain can spark emotions, causing you to act Activism Kelsey Smith The Photograph The Great Depression - distributed educational material and press information
- created a photography program
- Roy Stryker created the Great Depression exhibit for the 1938 International Photographic Exhibition - Stryker said the theme was "people"
- however, the exhibit is not very diverse --> it features mostly while, rural, poor Americans - Goal of the exhibit: "To introduce America to Americans" Journalism - Do photographs accurately reflect time periods and people?
- Or are photographs used as a tool to shape peoples' perceptions? - The New Deal created the Farm Security Administration (FSA), whose job was to "combat and chronicle poverty in rural America" (Flynn) 1938 Great Depression Photography Exhibit Journalism - they "represent uncontrollable characters in the highly controlled world of celebrity image making” (Mendelson) "The photograph itself is not the end, it is only the first step in a process to enforce change" Michelle Bogre Sexism Globalism Racism in the 20th century Activism - critical black memory: "mode of historical interpretation and political critique that has functioned as an important resource for framing and mobilizing African American social and political identities and movements" (Raiford)
- the photograph = technology of memory - i.e.: lynching - these photographs lead to a " historical discourse" (Raiford) - forces you to look at the photograph and within it
- as document and social practice
- can't ignore it --> gives you a conscience - women are objectified by the lens
- no longer human --> merely an object, a tool - prevalent in advertising and modeling, but also in journalism
- does not mirror external world, mirrors a false reality... a fantasy Activism the camera as a method of connection, providing a visual of different cultures - "isolates a single moment in time" (McLuhan 188)
- through photography, the written and spoken word becomes virtually obsolete
- mirrors the world automatically
- gives permanence to people and things
- useful for both groups and individuals, whereas written language is geared towards only the individual
- creates problems for other mediums:
- novelist cannot write about what has already been photographed, they must use their own creativity to make something imaginary Sexism Olympic Photography - beach volleyball Olympic photography coverage consists of this: The Photograph Today... Jonathan Torgovnik - created an exhibit entitled, Intended Consequences; Rwandan Children Born of Rape
- established Foundation Rwanda
- activist photography becomes personal - negative and positive implications
- it can distort reality
- used as a method of persuasion (good and bad)
- used for historical purposes
- accurate and inaccurate
- gives permanence to people and things
- can be used for personal documentation
- syntax has not become obsolete, but the visual medium is more accessible and universal - not focused on their skills or talent, rather on their bodies - has the ability to let you experience different cultures without having to leave your own
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