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martyr posters part 1

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Uploaded on May 11, 2009

A look at some responses to Palestinian martyr posters in the context of ideas raised in the Visuality & Culture course. Every death is public, and marked through photographic representation- one that is mass-produced and inundates the landscape with presented meaning. Through presentation as martyrs, the photographs on the posters reflect existing social relationships and simultaneously connect and distance the individual depicted from their actual existence and political factors that impact them in life and death. In discussing Barthes, death and photography, we discussed a clarity reached through a pierced conscience, and the operator/presenter, spectator (myriad in a public street), and target (bolstering the legitimacy of Palestinian nationality, resistance, suffering and reality) are all at work in the case of Palestinian martyr posters. The sign and referent do indeed collapse into each other, and the ubiquity of these posters attempts to ensure that they succeed in reinforcing purpose in the Palestinian cause.

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