Regarding the Pain of Others Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Chapter 1

• Sontag asserts that notions of war vary by culture, gender and social class.

• Images could be manipulated and interpretations skewed based on context and presentation.

• Sontag argues that horrific images of war are not sufficient to inspire a rejection of armed conflict nor military action.

• Sontag cites Virginia Woolf's assertion that war is a male-dominant activity.
• Sontag departs from Woolf in her argument that images are not received in a universally consistent manner.

• Similar reactions of repulsion and horror did not imply equivalent perceptions of the image.

• Viewers experience the horror of war images differently; reactions vary based on the person's place in history and cultural experience.

• A horrified reaction to images of war does not necessarily suggest a disdain for war itself.
• Sontag argues that images alone do not convey a singular meaning; context must be provided.

• She observes that captions significantly influence the reception of...

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