January 11, 2009

The Rock


I was interested in the symbolism in this image leading a Die Welt story speculating how Obama’s philosophy of engagement is going to go down with Iran. As it pointedly overlays a simultaneously frosty, yet buoyant and electrically-outlined Barack at the microphone/bully pulpit, the sense is that a rock, as much as it can secure a stack of newspapers, can also be used to throw.

The photo in the actual article, by the way, plays with similar subject matter. (Just below, right. Click for full size.)

Die Welt 2.jpg

In that version, printing technicians check a copy of a different newspaper fronting a large photo of Obama against a huge “Change” banner. Above it, to the right, is a small photo of Iran’s leader, Ali Khameni. The composition reflects Obama’s seemingly outsized potential as a change agent combined with the natural tension between two leaders, driven home by the deliberating/speculating gestures of the two men.

If you can translate the headline in either photo by the way, I’d be curious to know.

(image 1: unattributed. image 2: AFP)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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