February 16, 2021
Chatting the Pictures

Chatting the Pictures: Washington Trying to Steady Things

Welcome to Chatting the Pictures. Every two weeks, we present a short, lively video discussion between Michael Shaw, publisher of Reading the Pictures, and writer, professor, and historian, Cara Finnegan, examining a significant picture in the news.

By Staff
About the Video

This photo by Timothy Clary was taken for AFP. This statue outside of New York’s Federal Hall is sometimes used to illustrate stories about the economy given that the NY Stock Exchange is across the street. But the monument of George Washington — from this compelling angle — seems to resonate with several national issues right now. In the video, we discuss some of those connections, including the emphasis on economic inequality as Joe Biden assumes office and the recent controversy over stock speculation. We also examine the symbolic parallel between the statue and its historic background at Federal Hall with the scenes of the recent uprising at the Capitol in Washington.

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Michael Shaw

An analyst of news photos and visual journalism, and a frequent lecturer and writer on visual politics, photojournalism and media literacy, Michael is the founder and publisher of Reading the Pictures.

Cara Finnegan

Cara Finnegan is a writer, photo historian, and professor of Communication at the University of Illinois. She has been affiliated with Reading The Pictures for nearly 15 years, most recently as co-host of Chatting The Pictures. Her most recent book is Photographic Presidents: Making History from Daguerreotype to Digital.


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