susan sontag on photography in plato's cave summary

Photographers always, inevitably, impose their own preferences on their product merely by choosing where they point their camera and how they point it. Sontag also notes that the role of the photographer as innocent bystander who continues to take photographs is ethically questionable. Have study documents to share about On Photography? Upload them to earn free Course Hero access! Born in 1933, Sontag wrote plays, essays, and fiction until her death in 2004. She argues that photographing something is gaining ownership of it and creating a kind of, knowledge-like, relation to the world. 2019. Course Hero. Humankind lingers unregenerately in Plato's cave, still reveling, its age-old habit, in mere images of the truth. Full summary at http://www.dailyrenegade.com In fact, there are people behind the cameras who take photographs, and a photograph doesn't show everything. But being educated by photographs is not like being educated by older, more artisanal images. Humanity, argues Susan Sontag in "In Plato's Cave" in her collection of essays "On Photography", is still in Plato's cave. New York: Delta Books, 1977, pp. Course Hero, "On Photography Study Guide," March 1, 2019, accessed January 16, 2021, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/On-Photography/. “Photography,” she writes, “implies that we know about the world if we accept it as the camera records it. On Photography: In Plato’s Cave Susan Sontag. The image can inform the viewer, but it also separates the viewer from the subjects of the image. But this is … Photographs cannot give viewers an idea alone without a surrounding political or social construct to guide viewers. Each essay - of which there are five - was originally circulated periodically in the New York Review of Books between 1973-1977. Susan Sontag, In Plato’s Cave from the book: On Photography. One of Sontag's main observations about photography is that photographs are like the shadows inside the ancient Greek philosopher Plato's metaphorical cave. Of course, this modern day was the 1970's, but many of the key elements described in the collection of essays still remain relevant. Photography is used in criminal investigations as evidence, used by journalists to accompany news articles, and used by scientists to explain hypotheses and results. Understanding the world, Sontag maintains, begins with refusing to take everything at face value and investigating reality. 1 Mar. Photography creates a miniature representation of parts (always just parts) of the visible world that anyone can obtain as his own. People are addicted to images and rely on them to confirm reality and make experiences meaningful. Nevertheless, Sontag’s radical thoughts on photography are as potent as ever. First published in 1977, it brings together a series of nonfiction pieces originally published in The New York Review of Books between 1973 and 1977. It delves into the idea of ‘transparency’, where photographers have eliminated the boundaries of art and are faced with the prospect of being free to capture. ‘Photographs alter and enlarge our notions of what is worth looking at’- we think about what would make a worthy photograph and what catches our eye. For the most part, she describes the relationship between photography and capitalism in society. The violence becomes less real, and the viewer has less ability to respond with compassion. Photography changes are conditions of imprisonment and create a kind of "ethics of vision" and the feeling that we can contain the whole world in our heads. For Sontag, the readings include “Notes on Camp” (1964), “Against Interpretation” (1966), and “In Plato’s Cave” (1977), the last of which is the subject of this installment of Course Notes. Books by Susan Sontag and about photography you should definitely read. She claims that people erroneously think of photography as representing reality and connecting them with it more directly than other art forms do. Her book is a collection of six essays that explore photography in the deepest of manners. March 1, 2019. In On Photography, Susan Sontag discusses what she believes photography does to society in the modern day. Today, everything exists in order to be photographed (see also. She rejects the photographer's insistence that people accept a photograph as it appears and by doing so understand the world as the photograph represents it. Photographs by Jacob Riis (1849–1914) gave people unfamiliar with the slums of New York City a sense of the squalor in which their occupants lived, but viewers can't tell how poverty and filth function in the daily lives of the people in the photographs. in Creative Digital Practice , Creative Digital Practice Assignment 1 , Uncategorized . Sontag's background in philosophy is evident in this argument, as she uses the philosophical definition of understanding a thing and brings Plato into the equation. Collecting photographs, Sontag Argues, is in a sense collecting to world. The point of the metaphor of the cave is that people sit inside the cave and watch shadows being reflected against a wall, and are transfixed by these moving images. 100% (2) Pages: 2 year: 2016/2017. Unlike most literary critics, Sontag believes that literary criticism is growing increasingly destructive towards the very works of art that they, supposedly, so greatly "appreciate" and "respect." She connects it to Plato’s cave theory. Sontag says that photography "makes us feel that the world is more available than it really is." She had no formal training in art or photography—she studied English and philosophy at Harvard—but immersed herself in the New York cultural scene from 1959 onward. Viewers see the worst moments of subjects' lives in photographs of atrocities, but photographs cannot convey the totality of those lives or the complex feelings people have. It is a way of participating in an event without being a part of it. Download a PDF to print or study offline. Susan Sontag-On Photography In Platos cave – summary. Among these, she contrasts Diane Arbus's work with that of Depression-era documentary photography commissioned by the Farm Security Administration. In other words, we need the camera in order to realize and substantiate our experiences. Reality exists outside the cave, but people inside the cave cannot connect with it. Copyright © 2016. America, Seen through Photographs, Darkly. The first act is locutionary act w... Roland Barthes's famous essay "The Death of the Author" (1967) is a meditation on the rules of author and reader as mediat... "Can the Subaltern Speak?" . 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