Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
November 4, 2005

Your Turn: Calling It A Draw?

20051022Issueecon

For how ballyhooed the Iraqi constitution was, it’s referendum couldn’t have been more ignored.  Like the White House, the press seemed to consider the outcome a non-issue (or a foregone conclusion?) almost before the polls had even closed.

This October 22nd Economist cover — dated a week following the vote but before the outcome was clear — is based on the election, but its focus seems as much directed at the overall picture in Iraq right now.

As usual, The BAG has some questions.  For example:

Is the image static, or — like a cartoon panel — should it be read sequentially?

By characterizing the "bombing" as the work of one hand, is the
magazine perpetuating the same gross oversimplification practiced on
this side of the Atlantic implying that the lawlessness, the factional
violence, the al Qaeda mayhem and the Sunni uprising are either the
same, or indistinguishable?

Given the generally conservative, pro-business slant of The Economist
(and the fact this illustration fronts the American edition), what
other assumptions are implicit here? Just like the question about the
insurgencies, does the single voting hand convey too much unanimity to
a country at serious risk of breaking apart?

How else would you read this?

(illustration: Economist Magazine. Cover. October 22, 2005.)

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