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poverty porn

Exploiting the Poor Through the Images We Use? (PART 2)

Antonio Lambino's picture

Visual representations of the poor have the power to evoke visceral reactions which can be harnessed toward positive development outcomes.  At the same time, those who use these images run the risk of exploiting the very same people whom they seek to help. 

comment to a previous post on this topic captures the trade-off rather well:

"… human strife is whittled down to a spectacle that often furthers cultural and economic divides when they should be bridging them.  However, as visual representations can be an extremely effective way of communicating, we really cannot do away with them… one can only approximate the ideal of a just and compelling representation."