Images-of family often privilege “heterosexist ideals of

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Images-of family often privilege “heterosexist ideals of Powered By Docstoc
					Weaving Quotes into An argument: Quotes can be used to:  Directly support argument at hand  Provide definition which is key to understanding point at hand  Compare or contrast ideas/theories/definitions/arguments  Clarify an argument  Serve as catalyst to argue against  Add emphasis  Deepen argument  Broach new point; serve as launching pad for new point you want to make  Present other point of view in order to prove your open mindedness In Rhetorical Visions, Wendy Hesford and Joe Brueggemann write that “when considering the rhetorical vision that an image conveys, we need to consider what kinds of stories the images tell and what (and whose) stories are rendered invisible or inaudible” (10). What many find so admirable about the FSA photographs is that the photographers make a concerted effort to render visible the stories of the Great Depression, which often go untold. More specifically, the photographers attempt to tell the stories of rural farmers whose lives have been both figuratively and literally uprooted by the Dust Bowl. Yet, because the photographs were specifically taken to persuade government officials and middle class Americans to support New Deal policies such as the FSA, some have argued that these photos border on propoganda. In “Reframing the Human Family Romance,” Marianne Hirsch explains why Edward Stiechen created his famous Family of Man exhibit, which attracted hundreds of thousands of visitors at the MOMA in its first fifteen weeks. According to Hirsch, Steichen believed “photographic images could…represent the universality of human experience and because of the particular qualities of the medium,” photographs have “natural communicative abilities” and the “powerful illusion of unmediated and „truthful‟ representation” (134). Steichen thought if his audience could identify with people across cultures, then they might be less inclined to wage war. In similar ways, the FSA photographers understood that photographs have natural communicative abilities” and are indeed powerful illusions of unmediated and truthful representation. They knew if they effectively used specific rhetorical strategies to document and represent the plight of rural farmers, their audience would believe these images were truthfully representing the tragedies depicted in the images. In “The Photograph as an Intersection of Gazes,” Catherine Lutz and Jane Collins write, “Certain elements of composition or content may make it more likely that the reader will resist the photographic gaze and its ideological messages or potentials” (293). Such elements could be unnatural colors, obvious photo touch ups, and distortions of angles and thus objects in the image (293). Likewise, certain elements of composition or content may make it more likely that the reader will share the photographers gaze and its ideological messages. In the field of visual rhetorics, such elements are conceived of as rhetorical strategies. *For information about integrating quotes smoothly into your essay, go to the Integrating Quotations file in Laurie’s Helpful Hints folder in Course Documents on Blackboard.

Choose 2 quotes from below and freewrite about how they connect to your image/argument. Try to practive weaving them into a possible argument for your conclusion. Images of family often privilege “heterosexist ideals of domesticity through photographic realism, visually inscribing culturally assigned gender roles” (Kozol 233). “Photographic realism…has the visual power to circumscribe woman‟s social roles within a domestic world” (Kozol 241). People of color often appear as “representative of social problems but never to signify the American Dream” (Kozol 251). “The reader‟s gaze…has a history and a future, and it is structured by the mental work of inference and imagination, provoked by the picture‟s inherent ambiguity….The readers gaze is structured by a large number of cultural elements or models….Cultural models that we have learned help us interpret gestures such as the thrown back shoulders of an Argentinean cowboy as indicative of confidence, strength, and bravery” (Lutz and Collins 294). “Photographs are mediated signs that contain politically significant messages. This is especially true because politics involve more than battles to control the government; it is also he exercise of power in symbolic and practical activities of everyday life” (Kozol 234). “Under most circumstances, the photographer‟s gaze and the viewer‟s gaze overlap. The photographer may treat the camera eye as simply a conduit for the reader‟s look, the „searching light‟ (Mertz 1985) of his or her vision. Though these two looks can be disentangled, the technology and conventions of photography force the reader to follow the eye and see the world from its position” (Lutz and Collins 293). “The photograph has been said (Mertz 1985) to necessarily distance the viewer by changing the person photographed into an object—we know our gaze falls on a two dimensional object—and promoting fantasy. Still, the presumed consent of the other to be photographed can give the viewer the illusion of having some relationship with him or her” (Lutz and Collins 295). The camera gaze can…establish at least the illusion of intimacy and communication….In published form, of course, the photographed person is still „subjected to an unreturnable gaze‟ (Tagg 1988:64), in no position to speak” (Luz and Collins 295). “A „good picture‟ is a picture that makes sense in terms of prevailing ideas about the other, including ideas about … difference” (Lutz and Collins 298). Our reading of theory has tutored our gaze in distinctive ways, told us how to understand the techniques by with the photographs work, how to find our way to something other than an aesthetic or literal reading, suggesting we view them as cultural artifacts” (Lutz and Collins 307)


The seductiveness of the pictures both captures and instructs us. We are captured by the temptation to view the photographs as more real than the world” (Lutz and Collins 307). Rhetorician Kenneth Burke has noted that identification often occurs alongside, and is actually built upon, difference” (18). “What is not seen is as much a part of the context of the photograph as what is seen” (Hesford and Brueggemann 63). “”Photography…can lift individuals as subjects from the humdrum and turn them into symbols of universal humanity‟” (qtd. in Hirsch 134). If one instrument helped construct and perpetuate the ideology which links the notion of universal humanity to the idea of familiality, it is the camera and its byproducts” (Hirsch 133).

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