Dorothea Lange paper - Kevin M Button AmCult 201 GSI Kiri...

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Kevin M. Button AmCult 201 GSI: Kiri Sailiata March 18 th , 2008 Dorothea Lange’s Emotional Interpretation of the Japanese-American Internment During World War II (WWII) the American public was expected to give up certain liberties, foods, and natural resources as a way to help the war effort. By sacrificing here in the United States, Americans were helping the troops overseas with everyday necessities. Yet, while most Americans sacrificed meat, steel, iron, and curtailed their deprecation of the government, others gave up far more than the average American ever thought they would “sacrifice” for the war effort. Japanese-Americans were gathered up by the American government and sent to Internment Camps during WWII as a supposed sacrifice that was necessary to national security and the war effort. Dorothea Lange knew this “sacrifice” was based on hysteria and hate, and her photographs on the internment show this enlightened thought. Her photograph of the desolate internment camp is a great example. Studied and analyzed here, this photo is the embodiment of the anger and sadness Lange felt for the interned Japanese-Americans during the hate and hysteria-driven anti-Japanese movement of WWII (Hass, March 10). By examining details of this photo, and then giving an analysis and contextual feedback, Lange is able to convey to the viewer her feelings as well as creating many others. First, and foremost, when looking at the photo the most notable aspect of it is the focal point: the road that seems to end in infinity that cuts through the center. The seemingly endless length of this road allowed Lange to convey an idea of infinity to the situation at hand. By
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having no end in sight, Lange mirrors the thoughts of the interned Japanese-Americans about their government-imposed prison sentence. This idea of infinity gives the viewer a sense of gravity to the situation at hand. However, it is not the endless road that pulls at the emotional
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course AMCULT 201 taught by Professor Kristenhas during the Winter '08 term at University of Michigan.

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Dorothea Lange paper - Kevin M Button AmCult 201 GSI Kiri...

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