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Response 1 - The Photographer as a Position of Power: A...

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The Photographer as a Position of Power: A meditation on Susan Sontag’s In Plato’s Cave Parker Watson English 058 Section 001 February 13, 2007
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Parker 2 Parker Watson Dr. Maria DeGuzmán English 058 Section 001 13 February 2007 The Photographer as a Position of Power: A meditation on Susan Sontag’s In Plato’s Cave As with most complex things, people often times fail to realize photography’s intricacy. Not the intricacy of physical hardware, but the ethics and that which surrounds the idea of a photograph. Susan Sontag, however, delivers a profound analysis of the art of photography in In Plato’s Cave , a short essay contained in On Photography . She delves into a world full of depth and questions, a world that many do not even care to notice or acknowledge. Throughout this piece, Sontag makes subtle comments on photography and its use as a source of power. People use photography to serve as documentation of certain event that has, in fact, happened. This in itself is used as a form of power: “…photographs became a useful tool of modern states in the surveillance and control of their increasingly mobile populations” (Sontag 5). Many photographs that fulfill the purpose of documentation are war photographs. One such photograph is the famous, or perhaps infamous, image of children running down the street covered in Napalm toward the photographer. This picture if often viewed a statement about the
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Response 1 - The Photographer as a Position of Power: A...

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