The Corcoran Gallery’s exhibit on war photography is a clear indication of how important photography has been in the general public’s understanding of war. War photography has been the major force against the public’s romanticization of war.
It is amazing how poignant pictures can be. The photos in the exhibit allowed the viewer to feel sympathetic towards the subjects in the picture, helping to decrease the gap between people at home and people at war. Sontag mentions in her essay that people will never be able to feel empathy towards subjects in a war photograph because they have not gone through the same adversity. While I do agree with her, I think that even the sympathy people feel towards others in photographs can do a huge deal in helping the general public understand what what war is like. Even the sympathy people feel towards subjects in pictures allows them to be more aware of the adversity people face at war.
One particular photograph that struck me was photographed by Don McCullen and was named Fallen North Vietnamese Soldier. This photograph captured a fallen Vietnamese soldier with photos of his family and friends and little trinkets of his laid out in-front of him. While I have not been so closely involved with death, I was able to sympathize with the soldier and his loved one’s. The things laid out in-front of the soldier had a great impact as they allowed the viewer to better understand the soldier as a person.