Regarding the Pain of Others

Front Cover
Macmillan, 2004 - Social Science - 131 pages
Watching the evening news offers constant evidence of atrocity--a daily commonplace in our "society of spectacle." But are viewers inured--or incited--to violence by the daily depiction of cruelty and horror? Is the viewer's perception of reality eroded by the universal availability of imagery intended to shock? In this investigation of the role of imagery in our culture, Susan Sontag cuts through circular arguments about how pictures can inspire dissent or foster violence as she takes a fresh look at the representation of atrocity--from Goya's The Disasters of War to photographs of the American Civil War, lynchings of blacks in the South, and Dachau and Auschwitz to contemporary horrific images of Bosnia, Sierra Leone, Rwanda, and New York City on September 11, 2001. Sontag's new book, a startling reappraisal of the intersection of "information", "news," "art," and politics in the contemporary depiction of war and disaster, will forever alter our thinking about the uses and meanings of images in our world.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4
4 stars
5
3 stars
2
2 stars
3
1 star
0

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jonfaith - LibraryThing

Cursory and effective, I read this in an afternoon. I have never allowed myself access to her fiction but her essays always maintained a welcome gravity. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Lord_Boris - LibraryThing

An analysis of the human response to images of the suffering of others. Mainly relating to pictures of people afflicted by war from Goya's 18th century Disasters of War, to late 20th century conflicts ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
18
Section 3
40
Section 4
59
Section 5
74
Section 6
95
Section 7
104
Section 8
114
Section 9
119
Section 10
129
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2004)

Susan Sontag is the author of four novels, The Benefactor, Death Kit, The Volcano Lover, and In America, which won the 2000 National Book Award for fiction; a collection of stories, I, etcetera; several plays, including Alice in Bed; and five works of nonfiction, among them Against Interpretation and On Photography, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism. Her books are translated into thirty-two languages. In 2001, she was awarded the Jerusalem Prize for the body of her work, and she received the Prince of Asturias Prize for Literature in 2003.

Bibliographic information