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Lecture Eleven: Censorship and Truth

Notions and definitions of censorship and truth, photography in rendering truth?

Indexical - the capacity to render something in reality ‘the camera never lies’ it does lie and it can lie, it has lied for a very long time! You can make the camera lie.

Ansel Adams - it’s value as photography as art? Does the camera deliver truth in terms of the imagery it delivers, adams uses the same negative over and over again, through manipulation her alters what the image can mean and shows visually, they imply different times of day for example. But does this really matter?

Manipulation can be used to alter things and the rendering of historical truth trough photography

The use of photography as a tool for political gain and used a propaganda, in history people are removed from images and therefore removes from history, rendering a false history and a false image that is lying

In a capitalist world, is it fair game to enhance an image when it will sell your product when we live in a world where if it can be sold to you it will be sold to you.

We have an illusion that what is presented to us in an image is true but it’s more likely not.

How much does it matter that it is not telling the truth as it is serving a purpose and suggesting a message? Do we need to know it’s real?

Truth is now explored in all the media we consume and the representation of truth in the media is always being pushed to it’s limits, espically within photography and photoshop, and where the media is always an ‘edited’ representation of the actual truth. This can also be taken further into the construction and combining of images to create new meaning completely taken away from it’s original context, again blurring the line between truth and lies within the mass media. Furthermore the camera as a device for voyeurism can also leads to complexities in the representation of truth, as the camera takes a snapshot in a moment of time and the whole truth may not be revealed in the images therefore additional meaning and context can be created and crafted around the images which differs from it’s original truth.

Additionally this type of censorship and construction in the images and media we consume can be used to construct our understanding of people in the world and lead the government to establish predetermined ideal about certain people, races, countries, political issues etc.

‘At that time [World War II], I fervently believed just about everything I was exposed to in school and in the media. For example, I knew that all Germans were evil and that all Japanese were sneaky and treacherous, while all white Americans were clean-cut, honest, fair-minded, and trusting’

Elliot Aronson in Pratkanis and Aronson, (1992), Age of Propaganda, p. Xii

Persuasion - ‘a deliberate and successful attempt by one person to get another person by appeals to reason to freely accept beliefs, attitudes, values, intentions, or actions’.

Persuasion - ‘a deliberate and successful attempt by one person to get another person by appeals to reason to freely accept beliefs, attitudes, values, intentions, or actions’.

Censorship, primarily is the practice or policy of censoring films, letters and publications, whereas to censor, is where a person is authorized to examine films letters or publications in order to ban or cut anything to be considered obscene or objectionable which directly relate to ‘morals’ which is based on our understanding or right or wrong within the principles of behavior within the society in which we live.

Our morals as come as a result of our ethics, which is also a code of behavior that is followed by a particular group of people or an individual or particular profession.

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