Im/Personal: The Evolution of Wartime Photography

Carmody examines the changing trend from generic, patriotic images to deeply personal and individualized shots in the field. Focusing on the time periods of WWII and the current War on Terror, he draws upon historical works such as the propaganda posters of Jes Schlaikjer and photos by Khaldei, Rosenthal, and Capa. Additionally, images from the TIME Portfolio, Afghanistan: The Images That Moved Them Most and select images from photographers such as Thomas Franklin help demonstrate this change. The difference in tone and subject of these photos is evidenced by analyzing the major differences in the photos themselves and the reason for which they were taken. External sources by authors Tonei Glavinic and Liam Kennedy serve to expand upon the author’s central claim. Overall, Carmody creates a compelling argument that the dominant imagery of war between WW2 and the conflicts in the Middle East have switched from impersonal to personal.

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3 thoughts on “Im/Personal: The Evolution of Wartime Photography”

  1. Your argument sounds really solid! Your wide range of sources is definitely a huge strong point. What exactly do Glavinic and Kennedy talk about in their pieces? Also, I know you’re looking at images from certain photographers, but is there a certain classification for the photos you’re looking at/analyzing?

  2. This is a really intriguing project and I think you have a very unique claim about the images. I’m curious if you are approaching from a broader historical view, or from the photographers themselves. Historically speaking, is there a specific point in time when you think photography changed from impersonal to personal? Additionally, do you think there’s an explanation, perhaps political, for why this change occurred?

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