June 30, 2023
Chatting the Pictures

Chatting the Pictures: Rough Times for Trump and His Body Man

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. Chatting the Pictures is produced by Liliana Michelena.

By Staff
About the Video

Doug Mills took this photo for The New York Times. In it, we see Walt Nauta, Donald Trump’s personal aide, helping him with his shirt during a golf tournament at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Va., on May 25, 2023. Nauta, who hails from Guam, worked his way up from a U.S. Navy cook to a culinary specialist at the White House before becoming Trump’s personal attendant. Because of his steadfast loyalty, he is accused of conspiring with Trump to conceal top-secret records and brazenly lying about it. If found guilty, Nauta could receive a maximum prison sentence of 20 years.

This video delves into the dynamics of the Trump-Nauta relationship, examining the intimacy and the power imbalance in the physical gestures and emotional tone. We also explore the class and racial dynamics in Nauta’s heritage as a Pacific Islander and naval officer from Guam, offering select comparisons from British colonial art.

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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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