Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
July 27, 2013

Things You Ordinarily Wouldn't Notice in the Daily Picture Flow: "First Responders"

Looking at a lot of news photos day after day, you start to see patterns and connections you wouldn’t ordinarily think about. Here’s an example based on two recent disaster photos, one from Tokyo and the other from Mumbai. What struck me is that, with all the linguistic politics that followed 9/11, it seems one thing that got lost was the appreciation that “first responders” are typically us.

(photo 1: Rajanish Kakade/AP. caption: A young man falls on a flooded railway track during heavy rain in Mumbai, India, Wednesday, July 23, 2013. photo 2: AP. caption: Train passengers and railway staff push a train car in their effort to rescue a woman who fell and got stuck between the car and the platform while getting off at Japan Railway Minami Urawa Station in Saitama, near Tokyo, Monday morning, July 22, 2013. A Yomiuri Shimbun photographer who happened to be there said there was a big applause when the woman in her mid-30s, who fell to her waist, was safely rescued without any serious injuries. About 40 people helped the staff who were pushing the car.)

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