The power of the photograph was Re: [Marxism] Three very short visual Iraq commentaries

g.maclennan at qut.edu.au g.maclennan at qut.edu.au
Sun May 2 18:43:31 MDT 2004


Thanks for these, Walter.  I am struck by how horrible many 
of these images are.  But I am also struck by how many of 
them have not been shown in the West. These images are not 
getting through except via the net.  

They are merely leaking out because the photograph still has 
power as evidence. Juan Cole's essay (link available on 
www.juancole.com) on the war of the images is very relevant 
here.  He argues that the photographs from Abu Ghraib prison 
mean that the USA has lost the war of the images, and that 
means that it is losing the war.

Ironically you can tell that Cole is not a lecturer in 
Cultural Studies or Media Studies.  For him the photos 
contain a trace of the real, but in Cultural Studies under 
the influence of the theoretical idiocy of folk like Jean 
baudrillard and Michel Foucault, the category of the real and 
of truth were abolished.

But when the people move into struggle they have no time for 
the solipism of those with academic tenure.  Truth and the 
real matter and photography still has a role to play in 
bringing it to us.

regards

Gary




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