Regarding the Pain of Others Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Sontag suggests that, for the most part, photographs received more serious attention when placed in which of the following scenarios?

2. Sontag argues that which of the following effects keeps the television viewer's attention "light", "mobile" and fairly "indifferent" to the images on the screen?

3. Sebastiao Salgado's work called "Migrations: Humanity in Transition" was often criticized as being:

4. Sontag claims that some photographs which are "repulsive" can also ________.

5. Sontag suggests that it is still possible to "feel the pulse of Christian iconography" in much war photography. Which famous work of art does she suggest can be seen in W. Eugene Smith's photograph of the woman in Minamata cradling her child?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why did the people of Sarajevo object to having scenes of their war represented alongside scenes of the conflict in Somalia?

2. Discuss the significance of the photograph's intended purpose. If a photograph is intended to convey a message, but because of the context in which it is displayed does not, is the photograph still successful?

3. In her discussion of the emotional impact of artistic renderings of suffering, Sontag referrs to Kabuki or Bunraku plays. What are these plays? Why does Sontag include this example?

4. Although there are more images broadcast, Sontag suggests that the human response to suffering is relatively unchanged. Discuss Sontag's views on our capacity for dealing with suffering.

5. Describe the scene which Sontag refers to as the first description of bodies in anguish and identify the source of this description.

6. What does Sontag mean when she said that photographs transform?

7. Sontag discusses two widespread ideas about the influence of photography. What is the first idea? Discuss it including one example.

8. Discuss Sontag's assertion that some images serve as memento mori. What does she mean? How do they serve this purpose?

9. Sontag claims that there is historical evidence to suggest that, despite contemporary belief, war has always been the norm, and peace the exception to that norm. Discuss one of the examples Sontag provided.

10. Sontag claims that a book is still the best medium for circulating images of atrocity. Name the three reasons she provides.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Sontag suggested that galleries as venues for war photography and images of atrocity may not produce the proper reverence for the subjects and their suffering. Her main contention was with the environment which cultivates casual interest. Do you agree? Does displaying images of atrocities in public places diminish their effect? Are we, as Sontag suggests, less likely to linger and contemplate? Support your discussion with evidence and relevant analysis.

Essay Topic 2

Media coverage of the Vietnam War produced a mass outcry against war, while the media coverage of 9/11 produced more divergent effects on individuals. What do you think accounts for this difference? Is it perhaps the difference between a far-off conflict and an attack at "home"? Is it perhaps something in the nature of the wars themselves? Is it the difference in media coverage? Or is it something altogether different? Defend your position with evidence and support.

Essay Topic 3

Sontag began her discussion with an analysis of Virginia Woolf's book, "Three Guineas." Woolf's analysis of war and gender was a significant source throughout Sontag's argument. Read Woolf's "Three Guineas" and discuss your reaction to Woolf's argument. Did you agree with Woolf or Sontag? Or, perhaps, both, in some way? How did your assessment of Woolf's argument differ from Sontag's? Did you agree with Sontag's assertion that Woolf's text is somewhat dated in its discussion of war photography?

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