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  • Date Submitted: 09/03/2015 09:57 PM
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Jessica Juarez
28 January 2014
Period 8
Photography Enhances Our Knowledge

    Susan Sontag claims in her passage, On Photography, that photography limits our understanding of the world. However, photography allows us to see things that would be otherwise impossible to see. Sontag argues that photography does not allow people to truly understand things and that it does not teach any ethical or political knowledge. Yet photography deepens our understanding and expands our knowledge of the world around us. Without photography, people would have no idea of what surrounded them and what happened before their time. Photography produces a visual history of the world, thus producing a greater appreciation for it.
    The main purpose of taking photos is to relive moments in time or to re-experience an event in history. According to this, the purpose of photography is to deepen our understanding of the world around us. By allowing people to see an event, person, or place in a picture, it further develops that person's understanding of what is in the picture. Sontag believes that "only that which narrates can make us understand." This, in other words, is saying that people can only understand something through a report or a description. However, the world around us appears in images seen through our eyes and translated into meaning by intelligence. Only if humans had no mental ability within their minds to comprehend, would Sontag's statement then be true.
      Throughout history, photography has helped change the way we view the outside world and therefore change how we interact with it. According to Sontag, understanding what occurs around the world "starts from not accepting the world as it looks." However, photographs are a testament to what has occurred in the past and present, capable of making people aware of events and situations which occur around the world. Photography has helped change our perception of the world, the creatures in it and the events...


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