Wachten op beeld - De tragische retorica van Iconische foto’s | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 105, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-5275
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1244


Iconic photographs are visual arguments depicting an, often dramatic, particular situation showing victims of disasters. Spectators watching the photo of the particular situation, empathise with it, and project the feelings evoked onto the events that form the context for the scene in the picture. This mobilises them into political action. In the process, however, the depicted personal misery is perused to exemplify the larger events. The tragedy of iconic photographs is analysed not as the misery experienced by the depicted persons, but as the breach of their right to shame which is required for the photo to acquire iconicity. Examples are addressed, as well as the contrast classes of the self-portrait and Byzantine icons.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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