Reading the Pictures produces two video programs. Chatting the Pictures is a biweekly, highly-edited 10-minute webcast featuring publisher Michael Shaw and visual academic Cara Finnegan analyzing 3 key news photographs. The Reading the Pictures Salon is a panel discussion concerned with how the media and social media visually frame key social and cultural issues.

Previous Videos
Video October 31, 2021

Chatting the Pictures: Undersea Gardens and Positive Climate Change Visuals

On the eve of the critical Glasgow Climate Summit, we focus on and the power of images that promote constructive impact.

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Video October 25, 2021

Chatting the Pictures: Famed Congo Gorilla Dies in Her Caretaker’s Arms

We discuss the surprising power and depth of this viral image as Ndakasi, the famed Congo mountain gorilla, takes her last breath.

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Video October 14, 2021

Chatting the Pictures: Extinction Rebellion-Style Shock Waves, Climate Flooding Hits the U.N.

As the climate crisis escalates, the ferocity and creativity of the activist group Extinction Rebellion seem perfectly matched.

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Gender & Identity Video October 3, 2021

Chatting the Pictures: The Most Telling Photos of US Olympic Gymnasts Testifying Against the FBI

There were many photos of the Olympic gymnasts testifying about FBI negligence in their sexual abuse case. But none more assertive than this.

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Video September 26, 2021

Chatting the Pictures: Border Agent on Horseback Manhandling Haitian Migrant a Whip to Humanity

We deconstruct the photo of a US border agent on horseback using what looks like a whip on a Haitian migrant in Del Rio, Texas.

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Videos, explained by Michael Shaw
More about Chatting the Pictures and the Salon.

Chatting the Pictures is a lively, highly edited look at key news photographs. Co-hosts Michael Shaw, publisher of Reading the Pictures, and writer and historian, Cara Finnegan, meet to discuss three prominent photos in the recent news. You can find all the Chatting the Pictures replays here.

The Reading the Pictures Salon analyzes 8-9 carefully researched photos chosen for theme and depth of content. Each 90-minute panel is made up of leading photographers, photo editors, visual academics and other experts experienced in the subject.

Since 2008, we have produced 29 Salons working with sponsors such as Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the Open Society Foundation. We have covered topics from social justice to political campaigns to foreign policy. For examples, take a look at: The Visual Representation of the US/Mexico Border Wall in the Media; How Science is Pictured in the Media and Public Culture; The Visual Framing of the Migrant Crisis; The Visual Framing of Surveillance; The Debate Over White House Photo Access; The Picture from Syria; or The War on Women. Each post contains a full replay of the broadcast, along with 2-3 minute highlight videos from each photo discussed. You can find all the full salons here.