Ultimatums & Political Warfare Common In Photography World? How To Handle?

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by nick_nick|4, May 22, 2016.

  1. Dear Fellow Photographers,
    I'm coming across a lot of photographers bashing other photographers work. Granted we are here on a united cause of producing images so I don't see why we should be bashing or diving each other.
    There are instances where political differences (Trump vs Bernie / Hilary) for example where you have photographers of a certain political background mob other photographers from another political background. Or at least subconsciously dislike another person and use any ammunition they can foster to spread hate, spread dislike towards a certain person. Not all of us are clean of this endeavor either but after seeing some of these dramas I think it's wise to stop judging the photographer's backgrounds and just simply viewing their art as is.
    I wanted to get everyone's opinions on how to actually resolve a conflict or what ticks you guys about what other photographers are doing.
    Sales people are very good at this tactic of creating a problem that was never there to begin with. But upon creating that problem, it causes fear & anxiety to their target and somehow the victim will be inclined to buy or follow the suggestion. The problem gets created when someone creates it.
    A rhetorical scenario is as follows:
    If a photographer (Adam) were to create an album series consisting of colored people (for example Hispanics) and market that album as purely as that theme and there was no problem to the Hispanic people consenting first in appearing in these albums.
    Is it ethical that an outsider photographers (Jack) who may perceive Adam as a competition & driving away business/sales from them (Jack) and out of jealousy convince the Hispanic people inside this album to back off the project because of the photographer's political background? How is it Jack's business to do this? Is this border lining invasion of privacy or harassment? What proof is needed to charge when the people inside the album will not testify and they're convinced that Jack is correct and that Adam is a bad influence?
    To further define, if for example the photographer's (Adam) background is a Republican and is voting Trump, and then you have other photographer's like Jack pointing that fact and saying lies that "this photographer wants your family & Hispanics to be deported, don't support his work and have your images taken off"when clearly that's not his beliefs. Obviously the people involved in the album aren't politically savvy or knowledgeable but will be susceptible to the suggestion from Jack and end up retracting their work. What's more is that possibly Jack and his friend Tom, Jerry and Greg also are in a united cause of ensuring that Adam's work doesn't get published by stalking Adam's social media pages and work.

    Further, Jack will also blackmail the people's images inside the work and get them to disassociate from Adam or else they will be perceived as a "Mexican hater" in the community. For the unpolitical savvy, the people appearing inside this album will believe.
    It seems that Jack, Tom, Jerry and Greg are in a vendetta not against Adam but against Trump. Because they hate Trump so much, they take it out of Jack it seems.

    We can also flip the cause where it's Republicans going against Democrats. The fight is endless.
    How does one resolve a conflict like this? Has anyone experienced anything similar? How does one deal with these types of people?

    Is it normal for a person like Adam to lose business because other photographers have insights on his political backgrounds and points out his support towards a party? On one instance, it can't be defamation because the fact is true. On the second instance it's pretty much slander. As in the original client of Adam wouldn't have not known his political background until someone pointed it out and then the client decided to make a decision then and just stopped looking at the work.
    It seems that Jack, Greg, Tom and Jerry are on a vendetta and are spending way too much time focusing and looking at Adam's work rather than producing images. There's really no resolution it seems.

    On another instance, if one person has wronged another person a settlement can occur such as repairing the damage. In political circumstances, Greg, Jack, Tom and Jerry's settlement is having Adam out of business.

    Thoughts, comments and feedback much appreciated.
     
  2. You'll probably get a lot of different opinions on this. (As an aside, this could be a thread ripe for being shut down. We used to have an Off Topic forum, but because some of it ended up being bitter political fighting it was shut down. If people address the question, rather than the politics, it might be okay.)
    Personally, I prefer to judge someone's work by their work alone, not what I know of their political or religious beliefs. But the devil is always in the details. Does their work serve as propaganda for a point of view that I find demeaning, harmful, or hateful? If so, I might be less likely to divorce myself from their beliefs. I do not think it would be right to smear someone's work by exposing their political beliefs and painting it in a negative way. If I like someone's photographs, then I don't really care who they support politically. To point out a belief or political stance merely to take away from, or destroy, someone's business? No, I do not think that is right. But we are talking in such vague generalities here it is hard to decide.
    I find it sad that we live in such polarized and highly sensitive times. It seems like you can't swing a short stick without hitting someone, of any political persuasion, who becomes offended or outraged by something someone else did or said. But that's as far as I dare take this subject on this forum.
     
  3. Wow this is powerful!
    "To point out a belief or political stance merely to take away from, or destroy, someone's business? No, I do not think that is right."
    I agree to this. Especially if the business is a livelihood!

    Thanks for the headsup. Let me know if you had any suggestion on how to better portray this topic.
    Point being is other people trying to take away from & destroy someone's business.

    What is the counter to these types of people?
     
  4. Why?
    Because the majority of the people today have the "I am better than you" and do not respect the abilities of others.
     
  5. Mr. Nick? Can we see some of your images? Joined six days ago to post about some fetish images, and now we're on to "colored people"? Are your example figures actual photographers under pseudonyms, or did you make them up for the sake of controversy?
     
  6. I appeal to you that this is not for controversy but asking for a resolution of this conflict. I didn't post anything 6 days ago or post about fetish. I'm not talking about colored people either, I'm giving a rhetorical example. I'll post my recent work when I get a release from the images from the models. Until then, I'm posting here.
     
  7. For me, it's all fair game as long as it doesn't rise to slander or libel. If I like a photographer's work I don't mind someone
    informing me of their political views. I can then research it for myself and decide for myself whether it affects how I view
    their photographs. I can decide for myself whether and how to separate someone's beliefs and personality from their
    work. I can still like someone's photos even if I disagree with them vehemently on politics.


    I sometimes find it helpful in bridging gaps. There have been times when I've learned an artist I like has very different
    views from mine politically and that can make me realize that folks with very different beliefs can still have great worth to
    me.


    We talk about Leni Riefenstahl a lot in this context. IMO, she represented and was part of something hateful and evil.
    Yet I can still get a lot from her work even within its own horror. Having to deal with those kinds of contradictions
    and that kind of murkiness makes me a better person. Knowledge is power. But it's important to process it for myself and
    not let someone else's opinion of a photographer as a person become too persuasive before I have a chance to check it out and
    decide for myself.
     
  8. What are some of your favorite work pieces of Leni Riefenstahl?
     
  9. Fred -- I was going to mention Leni Reifenstahl but I thought it would walk perilously close to Godwin's Law. ;-) But seriously, that is an example of what I had in mind.
     
  10. "I didn't post anything 6 days ago or post about fetish"
    Well, in fact, you did.
    http://www.photo.net/casual-conversations-forum/00dt1X
     
  11. That's not 6 days ago. That was on April 16, more than a month ago. Secondly, that's not fetish content. I was asking about a Russian photographer. Please send me a message and please do not derail the this topic. This could've been settled via message.
     
  12. Sorry. It was a month ago you posted about the fetish pictures. Can we still see some of your pictures? Can we get a real-world example of this hypothetical "conflict" of yours? You know, the guy who gets grief for pictures of "colored people". Otherwise, the correct answer is, "Who cares? If this ever actually happens, then I'll look at the people and work that is involved."
     
  13. "I think it's wise to stop judging the photographer's backgrounds and just simply viewing their art as is."​
    There you are. You have answered the question. What else needs to be said.

    But notwithstanding that, I will just add the following to try to clarify my point. Those who wish to diminish another will always find some way to (try) to do so. A photograph is just what it is. No sentences (unless a title is included), just the image. The nationality of any photographer has little if any importance. One might guess at the political, social, religious, or other background of the photographer, but the image ultimately speaks for itself. Most viewers I think will likely see it that way. I have an admiration for those photographers who may make statements of social importance with their images (the Depression photographers, Cartier-Bresson, etc.) but who maintain some stance of objectivity and non-partisanship.
    Also, we no longer have an off-topic forum, so I would suggest that indrectly discussing either the US election, the controversial Work Law ("Loi de travail", 2016) in France, the murder of native girls in Canada, or any other topic with political content, might best be left elsewhere. Just my opinion, without negating the importance of politics in one's life. Do you not think that we can become sufficiently debative of aesthetics or the philosophy of photography here to satisfy our sense of personal values and opinions?
     
  14. For me, the main trouble with Bernie Sanders is that he is so far to the right.
    However, I am a great fan of Wagner, and I dislike von Karajan because of the mushy sounds orchestras under his direction made, not because he was NSDAP member #3,430,914 (Godwin's Law?).
    If being progressive or regressive is a disqualification for "liking", then we'd probably be limited to a very short time window in our choices, after all.
     
  15. Nick Nick, there's a very informative and well done documentary about Leni Riefenstahl called The Wonderful Horrible Life of Leni Riefenstahl that gives a good introduction to her and her work. The things of hers I then went on to see in whole were Triumph of the Will, Olympia, and part of Underwater Impressions. I preferred the scenes shown from Triumph of the Will in the documentary than seeing the whole film which went on a bit long for me and got a little repetitive. Olympia is awesome in its capture of the human form and athleticism, its evocation of beauty, and innovative camera work, even though all the more horrifying when one realizes the deeper subtext behind it and the influence of the master race ideology on it.
    I have never believed someone's photos, films, or paintings must stand alone. Often they do, but so much can be gained in the viewing experience when various things about the artist are known. Photos and art also live within the context of an era and the life of the person who made them. Seeing Olympia with no knowledge of when and by whom it was made and seeing Olympia with knowledge of when and by whom it was made are two very different experiences. Knowing the filmmaker's politics and allegiances most certainly is pertinent to watching and understanding and assessing the film, IMO. I find, certainly in this case, it gives a much fuller picture of what the film is and what some of its deeper and awful meaning is, even while beautiful in some measure. Knowing Riefenstahl's place in history broadens the aesthetics of her work into the realm of politics and humanity and certainly makes for a more complete picture when looking at her work.
     
  16. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    If a photographer (Adam) were to create an album series consisting of colored people (for example Hispanics) and market that album as purely as that theme and there was no problem to the Hispanic people consenting first in appearing in these albums.​

    The term "colored people" has been used as a derogatory term by racists in the US and also in South Africa. There's no ambiguity about that.
     
  17. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    Joined six days ago to post about some fetish images,​

    Note that the poster did not take the photos. The poster doesn't appear to have posted photos and using a fake name further hides the agenda. This probably isn't a post from a photographer, this is troll-like behavior.
     
  18. this is troll-like behavior​
    This is an unfortunate unsubstantiated accusation, and is preceded by the quotation of something demonstrably false, since the info generated by PN itself says the poster joined over a month ago. If Jeff determines for sure this person is a troll and that his presence here should be terminated, let him ask that that be done, in private. If that is not determined definitively, I'd sooner see Jeff's post retracted, by Jeff. Besides which a troll (a moniker I'm not willing to buy into here) is only as good as those willing to be trolled. If a troll can, on the other hand, be engaged by those who will base a constructive conversation on an OP, so much the better.
     
  19. Fred, I think you may have misunderstood my comment that a photo is a photo and it is not a text about it or a text on the person who made it. When we have to be told something about the image or the person who made it before we experience it (like some museum or gallery texts with images at exhibitions) we are denying ourselves a fresh experience and are making ourselves open to an influence that the photo itself does not need, at least on first viewing. A film which you arec instead discussing is similar. I don't need to know about Xavier Dolan to appreciate the film that tonight won him the Grand Prix and a lesser one at the Cannes film festival in Frsnce, athough quite apart from his film I think he is an interesting and attractive person and that might interest me on another plane and perhaps explain after the fact some things about his art. The same for a photographer, but I would rather experience the photo or series of photos before delving into his persona or history of motivations. I think he or she asan artist might prefer that, in any case.
     
  20. Obviously the people involved in the album aren't politically savvy or knowledgeable but will be susceptible to the suggestion from Jack and end up retracting their work. What's more is that possibly Jack and his friend Tom, Jerry and Greg also are in a united cause of ensuring that Adam's work doesn't get published by stalking Adam's social media pages and work.
    I don't know why you would presume that people involved in the album aren't politically knowledgeable and are susceptible to suggestion. They're the ones who have had direct experience with the person who photographed them. If the person who photographed them treated them with respect, why would they immediately turn against him because some strangers post crap on the internet?
     
  21. "Nick Nick" sounds to me like a francophone individual of questionable background is trying to steer up a dispute with a mostly anglophone hangout of photographers called Photonet. If he had used his original name, it would, at this place, look like : ".... ...." . Jeff, seems to me to have caught the origin of the poster.
    By the way, I disagree with Arthur's defense for photos seen in a vacuum. Photos, like any other artistic expressions, have contexts - but of course it demand an extra effort when looking at photos.
     
  22. Arthur, I believe I did and still do understand your point and happen to disagree with it, but am glad to hear your further explanation.
    In the case of Riefenstahl (and many other photographers, film-makers, painters, etc.), I have seen their work only after I know something about them. That's just life. It happens sometimes that you hear about someone and then look at their work.
    Sticking to Riefenstahl in particular, I do think her work needs the influence of my knowing about her. Without that knowledge, I miss out on something important and see her work in a vacuum and don't get the full thrust of it. IMO. What she would prefer "as an artist" is irrelevant to me. As a matter of fact, though I consider her an artist of some magnitude, I'm kind of happy to do whatever she would not prefer.
    I don't think anyone is just an artist (and I suspect you don't either). We are all more than one thing. And I find nothing at all unjust or less fulfilling artistically about knowing things about artists in advance of seeing their work.
    There are so many influences on me when I experience art, from how it's presented to knowledge about the artist to my mood at the time. I am in charge of how I manage all those influences and to what I extent I can view the art and want to view the art more or less objectively (or subjectively). Trying to limit knowledge of the artist in advance doesn't necessarily serve me.
    I will be influenced by the curator who puts an exhibit together. Does that mean I must encounter photos and artwork before ever seeing them in an exhibition, before they are ever lit by someone who is not the artist? Did I encounter Picasso or Van Gogh before I had heard they were great and seminal artists, which likely seduced me to some extent to appreciate them? I knew from the time I was a kid and long before I really had a sophisticated appreciation of art that Van Gogh had been severely depressed and cut off his ear. Does that standing out in my mind forever compromise my appreciation for his painting? I knew some of what motivated Wagner in his massively gestural, soaring music before having ever heard a note of Wagner and am glad I did. It has always provided a context in which to appreciate his music and doesn't lessen my appreciation of his music.
    I know of Polanski's unlawful sexual encounter with a 13-year old, so I think of him negatively. And I am OK dealing with that as I see any of his newer films. I don't wish I didn't know this about him so I could appreciate him "as an artist" differently. It is what it is. I get to judge his actions in the past, his film today, and deal with whatever that gives me in total. That's a real-life experience and art is part of real life for me.
     
  23. By the way, Arthur, there are times I do encounter photos and art without knowing a thing about the artist. Those are probably rarer but still great experiences. I'll take art any way I can get it. It's all good. Sometimes I'll be glad for the lack of advance knowledge. Sometimes, on the other hand, I'll get home from an exhibit, read about an artist, and say to myself, "Gee, I wish I had known that when I was looking at their work. It would have allowed me to see more."
     
  24. "Seeing more" than just the photo in an artificial vacuum, is indeed the key. I cannot imagine Arthur not being in agreement with that.
     
  25. The term "colored people" has been used as a derogatory term by racists in the US and also in South Africa. There's no ambiguity about that.​
    True enough, Jeff, but I heard the phrase used by a lot of decent folks in the early 1950s who preferred it over the alternatives. Even the NAACP still has the phrase embedded in its title, as you well know.
    So, though there is no doubt that the phrase has been used by racists, I am sure that the phrase itself is not to blame. Julian Bond and his wonderful legacy come to mind.
    Although I avoid the term and advise others to do so in common parlance, I don't think that we can necessarily infer anything about anyone's intentions for the occasional misstep on these matters. As LBJ famously said, "Just when I learn to say 'Negro,' they change it to 'black.'" Now we are forced to use seven syllables in order to clearly establish that we are not to be numbered among the racists.
    It's a minefield out there.
    --Lannie
     
  26. Sometimes, on the other hand, I'll get home from an exhibit, read about an artist, and say to myself, "Gee, I wish I had known that when I was looking at their work. It would have allowed me to see more."​
    Well said, Fred. I am not necessarily a "historicist" simply because I think that understanding persons' backgrounds and epochs can help us to understand their work or legacy. We all historicize to some extent, and I believe justifiably. We do not necessarily thereby automatically become value relativists.
    --Lannie
     
  27. Fred and Anders,
    My point of view is not seated uniquely on perceiving photographs as simply what they appear to be without other information about the subject or author. If my argument suggested that, then mea culpa. I am just as interested as others in having additional information.
    Like the case of political based images I like to see them and decide for myself whether they ring true or not for me.
    However, what I was attempting to say is that if photography has any communication value (conveying aesthetic value, symbolic or emotional statement, allowing us to see rare events or things, or suggesting some resolution or tentative to truth, or whatever else) I sincerely think that it is best, when that allows us to do so, to see the photo itself before adding background literature or facts to it (and that occurs more often than we may think, also a usual component of the review forum on Photo.Net). Our mind is then overwritten with our personal perception and observation. If another viewpoint is added by knowing something about the author or the situation photographed, then I like others am willing to rewrite my mind overlay at a later time. If I know the accessory stuff beforehand, my perception then overlays whatever the previous knowledge has contributed.
    Perhaps I am more of a purist when it comes to visual perception. Perhaps some will instead counter that with no, Plumpton, you are just a product of your prior experience, biases and cultural training. I agree that we cannot operate in a vacuum, except sometimes it is not good to have too much information filling that vacuum.
    Perhaps I have a too short attention span for politically generated photography. In some cases it is necessary, as the wealth of propaganda photographs of World War II apparently attest. As a person who would have been in support of the western allies position, I might have not needed any further information to what was depicted (women assembling rifles and bombs in my home town, etc., as an example of a factual use of the image), but how many people in Germany were able to recognize that the apparent hate shown towards German expatriates in Poland were very selected and non-representative images and not in any way the overall situation that allowed Hitler to convince his fellow citizens that Poland must be invaded. Or the case of the visit and the images accepted by the European Red Cross of children happily playing in an encampment in France, days before being sent to the gas chambers elsewhere. Yes, sometimes, we need information other than that of the event and image of it.
    Lannie, what do you mean by value relativism? And in what regard to the resent context? Are you referring simply to relativism, as defined here by Wikipedia?
    "Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity within themselves, but rather only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration."
    As the propaganda example probably shows, there is some degree of application of relativism in seeing images.
    I enjoy this discussion and differrences of viewpoints, but must apologize that I have to go back this morning to some serious writing that is due to be delivered today and which I struggle much more with (unfortunately). I will rejoin you later if the thread still has some steam left.
     
  28. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    I don't think that we can necessarily infer anything about anyone's intentions for the occasional misstep on these matters.​

    Given the lack of response, I'm inclined to infer otherwise.
    As LBJ famously said​

    Using someone well known as a racist isn't making a good case here.
     
  29. Arthur, yes, I did understand that you appreciate having information and background after you have viewed the photos or paintings and that you prefer to view them first and then gain that background information later.
    I tend to mix it up. Sometimes I will skip the introductory text and go right to the work. Sometimes I read the introduction or research an artist before I encounter her work. I can't say why I decide what I decide, but I like that flexibility. It can be my mood, it can be some simple bit of information I know about the artist in advance that either makes me want to know more from the beginning or wait to learn more later. Each way of doing it equally fulfilling to me, just different. One brings my "mind" in earlier, which is fine with me. And the more "pure" experience you describe works sometimes as well. I do the same with art books. Sometimes I go right to the pictures and then read the text. Sometimes I start with the text. Sometimes I even start from the back of the book or from the middle and go in different directions. I have started several museum exhibitions from the end and walked in the opposite direction of most of my fellow viewers.
    I agree with you that there's a difference between all the prior experience and biases we may have and getting this sort of direct background information about an artist. Where I differ is that I don't find it better to approach it one way or the other. I prefer to experience art in a variety of different ways, from the more mind-oriented to the more perceptual-oriented.
     
  30. Fred, I have to agree that the different ways of approaching a photo are equally interesting and fulfilling. I do both as well and also often go in opposite directions to the set museum exhibition suggestion as you do. Why do I usually prefer the direct look at an image or piece of music, I guess it again has something to do with the way one overlays the experience in one's mind (whether perceptual or mind activity). By having my first layer of impression followed by the textual or extra informational one, I am possibly less influenced in my gut reaction and even analytical appreciation by not having to deal with an initial layer of pre-digested information. Having that valuable input later can alter my impression and often does, but sometimes the gut reaction is diffused or modified then if I know too much beforehand.
    I just completed my text and one of the persons who viewed my subjects in 1850 was Henry David Thoreau. I use his interpretation of the subject matter (quote) in a sub-theme of my exposition text. But what a guy. He died at 44, and like Mozart he covered so much ground (including different subjects and disciplines) and much of that ground and his thoughts are quite relevant today. Perhaps I ought to have read him (and others who tread this area and left their thoughts) before composing my exhibition.
    I mentioned young filmmaker Dolan because I have seen three of his feature films before reading much about him (his first English only film is currently in production, while the Cannes film will be released in September). Perhaps I will gain more from his approach and texts of his films by reading more about him or watching in-depth interviews. He certainly is spunky enough to mix with the established greats who were at Cannes. No university courses in his past, instead a somewhat turbulent youth experience and a natural cinematographic brilliance and collaborative ability with actors. But then there were many other amazing directors and actors and their films in southern France last week, so considering just one and his or her work is not easy.
     
  31. Lannie, what do you mean by value relativism?​
    Arthur, I was talking about ethical relativism, but as part of a more general theory of value.
    The remark was tacked on by me after I had made a reference to "historicist" and "historicism," which as a school of thought numbers among its adherents some who are avowed ethical relativists.
    --Lannie
     
  32. Well if Adam is a Democrat and does a project about hispanics in America, than Jack, the Trumpette favoring photographer should try to understand the work and have some compassion for the artists point of view. If on the other hand if Adam is a trump supporter and does a project on hispanics in America, then yes, its safe to say he wants to deport them, build a wall, and prevent any muslims from entering the u.s. and is most likely a racist. What's the problem?
     
  33. Arthur, yes, I understand. As I said, I do like that sort of influence you speak of from the very beginning sometimes.
    Fortuitously, I am in Massachusetts and saw an exhibit at one of the contemporary museums today of the work of Sol LeWitt. He started working in the 60s, doing mostly geometric wall paintings. I had not heard of him and did read the intro wall placard upon entering the museum.
    I quote from that intro:
    Sol LeWitt executed his first wall painting in 1968. a year after publishing his influential text Paragraphs on Conceptual Art, in which he declared that "the idea is the most important aspect of the work."​
    It seems he made sure to publish the ideas previous to showing the work so that the ideas were present in the minds of viewers when he introduced the wall paintings themselves. Therefore, he determined that the information and idea of the work should precede the first layer of impression.
    On a matter unrelated to this particular thread, he also saw his wall paintings as the performance of a score and democratized the creation. He painted the first wall paintings himself and then provided very specific instructions (a score) for other artists to execute the other wall paintings and to recreate them for various exhibits in various cities. In that way, he purposely avoided the individualism associated with a lot of art in allowing for other performers to interpret his "scores."
    All of this was information I was happy to have before viewing the work. It all went nicely hand-in-hand with the viewing. I didn't want or need an information-free first viewing experience.
     
  34. The term "colored people" has been used as a derogatory term by racists in the US and also in South Africa. There's no ambiguity about that.​
    That would be shocking news to the NAACP, National Association of Colored People. Maybe you're suggesting the members of that decades old organization are too ill informed to know it's "derogatory"...............
    Kent in SD
     
  35. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    That would be shocking news to the NAACP​

    That's a historical thing, which you would know if you paid attention to anything they say. They don't use the term "colored people" in any of their statements, discussions, etc. They were forced to use that at the time they started.

    Nice try though.
     
  36. That's a historical thing, which you would know if you paid attention to anything they say. They don't use the term "colored people" in any of their statements, discussions, etc. They were forced to use that at the time they started.​
    Roosevelt (Teddy, FDR, Eleanor) all used it frequently. As did Harry Truman. As did JFK. As did Duke Ellington. It was the politically correct term. A racist would say "darky" or "nigra" if pretending to be polite. You are clueless.
    Kent in SD
     
  37. Seems the eminent black scholar Henry Louis Gates uses the expression as well. Go figure.
    That Wikipedia article is interesting, because it cites the opinion of the NAACPs communications director. Her take on it is that the term is antiquated, but not in itself offensive. Source article *here*.
     
  38. Well, we aren't going to settle this here. Let's give it a rest.
    --Lannie
     
  39. Kent, the clueless one is you. Currently the term is racist. There many alive today who experienced the water fountains and bathrooms marked "colored" and thus the term has a sting. Terminology for African-Americans has gone through many changes. Mistreated under one name or another, the words used for them changed.
    You are using the Roosevelt presidents, Teddy and FDR, as authorities for non-racist terminology? Teddy supported eugenics so that we would only have the "right people" around, and he was known to have referred to Africans a non-human, while the "great" FDR greeted the triumphant American athletes returning from the Olympics in Berlin in 1936, all but one, Jesse Owens. Owens said afterwards, ". . . it was our President who snubbed me." And it is important to remember FDR's internment of 100,000 Japanese-Americans.
    The OP used "colored people (for example Hispanics)". What kind of color is that? I'm Hispanic, which I know because the accents of my parents got us turned away from housing we could afford. Yet I'm as pale as my Scottish in-laws, which makes for quite a range together with some of my friends of Mexican or African-Colombian descent. To me, throwing out "colored people (for example Hispanics)" is plainly racist. Sounds like, "take any non-white group."
     
  40. There's another case . . . that of Sebastião Salgado. I realized the power of his photos early on and understood the acclaim he was getting but felt his nature and landscape photos were overly dramatic and stylized. Then I saw Salt of the Earth, which I recommend, a documentary about his work. I learned of his environmental ethics and his general benevolence, not to mention his fortitude in dealing with various of the world's populations. Whether it's "supposed to" or not, it made me have a renewed appreciation not just for the man but for the photos as well. I have a much more positive view of the photos themselves when I look at them now. I am perfectly OK with allowing what I know about him as a person to affect what I see when I look at his photos.
     
  41. Thank you, Hector Javkin.
     
  42. Hector, another thanks for your perceptive truths.
     
  43. "We talk about Leni Riefenstahl a lot in this context. IMO, she represented and was part of something hateful and evil. Yet I can still get a lot from her work even within its own horror"Fred
    You sometimes wonder about the kind of people like Leni Riefenstahl who use their skills to support evil....how that is so different from those who were "hands on".
    I suppose some people find a fascination much like those who collect Nazi memorabilia. The sad thought is she was not particularly talented...but then there's that fascination.
     
  44. Currently the term is racist.​
    "Colored people" is currently deemed to be racist by many persons, and "people of color" is not deemed to be racist by anyone that I am aware of.
    Why is this so? I think that it is because the phrase "colored people" was widely used during the era of legalized segregation, especially the era between Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) and Brown v. Board of Education (1954)--and somewhat beyond. For that fifty-eight-year period, segregation was the law of the land, as affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court. Things were arguably worse in 1950 than they had been in 1900, if many accounts are to be believed. In spite of some successes in breaking down barriers, the Deep South has been a horror of continuing racism--and frankly still is, though largely beneath the surface. I grew up in both northern Ohio (Akron) and upstate South Carolina, and I lost my black friends when we moved back to the South in 1955. Frankly, I could never identify with the South again. I did manage to escape the Deep South for much of adult life, depending on where the academic jobs were.
    Those who associate the phrase "colored people" with the memory of oppression are likely to remain sensitive to the term. They prefer a new term. This is their right. The rest of us do well to be sensitive to the feelings of those who have suffered under racial oppression--and who in too many cases continue to suffer from such oppression (if my students are to be believed, and I believe that they are and ought to be believed). If a word or phrase hurts others, we do well to avoid it, even if by our reckoning it "should not" be hurtful. Though many decent Southerners used the phrase "colored people" without any hint or stain of racism, as I pointed out earlier, the phrase is too closely associated with the horror of Jim Crow for many African-Americans to ever be comfortable with it again, if they ever were.
    To say that Henry Louis Gates used the phrase "colored people" is a bit misleading. Yes, it is true that it is the main title of one of his books, but his usage of the term is highly nuanced, even ironic at times.
    RELEVANCE TO THIS THREAD: None of this impels me to conclude that the original poster on this thread was or is a racist, and it was the suggestion that he was that impelled me to first address the efficacy of the phrase "colored people" in the first place.
    We could be a bit kinder to those who sometimes come stumbling into the discussion forums. I wouldn't be surprised if "Nick Nick" concludes that this is a hostile site, not worthy of another post. We shall see. When political correctness becomes the basis for bullying, it has gone too far.
    --Lannie
     
  45. Where money and ego are involved, expect the worst out of some of the people, all of the time.
    If you're going to be a political activist, or even be politically vocal on forums and such, expect people to take the opposite position and use it against you in both your personal and political life.
    It's interesting to observe my friends in active careers in law enforcement. All use assumed names in social media and tend to shy away from political discussion. OTOH, my friends retired from law enforcement use their own names and are very vocal. Most of us are in less volatile positions, but consideration should be given to anonymous participation in social forums, if such activity might impact your career.
     
  46. Landrum. with respect, you have a total lack of understanding.....
    S. Africa you were either black or colored...Southern states of USA yesterday/today have a think....
    It was not good to be either and has it got any better in the real world?
     
  47. Try thinking folk as human beings without putting names and tags on them. Landrum.
     
  48. Why do government forms ask what are the ethnic origins of folk...
    What possible reference does it have ?. Are certain ethnical backgrounds somehow different from the rest of us?
    Treat folk with respect and they will treat the society they live in with respect.
     
  49. "Colored people" is currently deemed to be racist by many persons, and "people of color" is not deemed to be racist by anyone that I am aware of.Landrum.
    A white elderly upper society person and his friends.
    You cannot help thinking he has a friendship....
     
  50. For me folk are just folk.
    All they want is to be able to feed their family and have a society that respects them....in poverty and wealth...with a health service not dependent on how many gold coins you have.
    They want to be part of society not labelled as Hispanic/Black or poor white trash.
    Just folk earning a living and caring for their families.
    Drop the name labels and inferences...
    00dxl6-563283284.jpg
     
  51. Landrum. with respect, you have a total lack of understanding.....
    Try thinking folk as human beings without putting names and tags on them. Landrum.​
    Allen, except for the section beginning "Relevance," I was referring to one thing and one thing only: how it is likely that the phrase "colored people" came to be racially sensitive whereas the phrase "people of color" did not. I have not labeled anyone, nor created any such labels.
    I stand by everything I wrote. If you are accusing me of being racially insensitive, then be prepared to defend such a spurious and scurrilous charge. I have written, taught, and given papers at conferences about race and related matters. I have been tear-gassed in defense of the rights of African-Americans. I taught six years at an African-American college, in my sixties at that, long after many of my colleagues retreated from the academic wars. My record is equally strong with regard to the defense of Hispanics and other oft-maligned groups.
    If you are going to imply that I am to any degree a racist, then you will have committed libel, which is not constitutionally-protected speech. I am copying this thread in order to defend my own reputation and interests.
    If you are accusing me of having said that there are bullies on this thread, on the other hand, then you are dead-on accurate.
    --Lannie
     
  52. "If you are going to imply that I am to any degree a racist, then you will have committed libel"
    Okay Im scared....Im going to hide under my bed...
    Promise I will not say another word because you will get me...
     
  53. Landrum Kelly is a wonderful person and all his posts are wonderful.
     
  54. And he is not a racialist, even secretly, and I apology if any of my thoughts have remotely implied that thought.
     
  55. There, apart from kissing your arse, what more can I say.
     
  56. Chill out.....
    00dxle-563284784.jpg
     
  57. That's actually a fine photo, Allen! They both are, but this one is particularly good.
    Mm, what is a. . . "racialist"?
    --Lannie
     
  58. Thanks, and a bigger thanks , for the chill....
    Now where is that Freddy...
     
  59. HERE is another fine photo by you, Allen.
    Perhaps this thread will bear photographic fruit at all and make it possible for members of (and visitors to) Photo.net to get to know the work that is archived her--and that is continually appearing here.
    --Lannie
     
  60. "T"hat's actually a fine photo, Allen! They both are, but this one is particularly good" Landrum".
    Thanks, kind words.
    Actually ,the former is the better photo......to my mind; look and look again....the little touch of feeling and all it implies.
     
  61. Allen, I think I could make the case either way. They are both fine pieces of work.
    --Lannie
     
  62. Thanks Landrum, I'm a sucker for a compliment. But I think you are missing the significant different between the two.
    Anyway, as mentioned in another thread, you are the poster.
    And no, I don't think you are a racialist, just caught in the cross fire.
    Fun photo...
    00dxm3-563285384.jpg
     
  63. Another great one, Allen.
    --Lannie
     
  64. Allen, here is one of mine made at a concert given at Livingstone College not too many years ago.
    --Lannie
    00dxn3-563286984.jpg
     
  65. Many things to like about the above posted street photograophy images and the choir.
    The college choir image is striking for its use of chiaroscuro and its separation of the individuals who are nonetheless very together and in apparent perfect harmony, a collective cultural expression that also speaks to the well-being, optimism and the future of its subjects. The hands holding the song books are great complements to the faces.
    A question regarding the small separated white element below the upper hands (a book leaflet) - has the unseen part of it (and the book of the upper two sinhgers) been blocked by something else (dark garment?) or were the unseen parts consciously painted out in PS?
     
  66. The hands holding the song books are great complements to the faces.​
    Thank you, Arthur. When I first posted a less tightly cropped version of this to PN, the title was "Hands."
    As for the dark areas, you can probably see what I did by looking at the photo I just linked to. The posted version here was also in the same folder.
    --Lannie
     

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