The Image of A Woman Growing Powerful After Eating the Chocolate Analysis

Description

Create a “Stage 3: Analysis” header at the top of the document.  
Write a 2–3 page analysis of your work. Feel free to draw from the notes you wrote in Stage 1 and Stage 2 (FinalProject_Stage1 and 2 attachment). You will see 3 images in the FinalProject_Stage1 and 2 attachment. Please add all 3 images in the document. We are promoting Powerhouse Chocolates. 
-What is the purpose of your work? Who is your audience?

-How do the images “speak” to this audience in particular? How did you address culture, demographics, psychographics? –
-How do the images work together to support a visual theme or tell a narrative? How do they contribute to a sense of visual unity? 
-How did you use perspective, composition, principles of design, color, imagery, and more to convey meaning?

-Is your visual product ethical? List three ways in which you abided by ethical principles, such as ensuring fair and balanced representation, avoiding bias, avoiding image manipulation to deceive or distort the truth, and so forth.

Is your visual product legal? Describe what you did to abide by copyright, ADA, and any other relevant laws. We did not require a transcript or closed captioning, but state whether your product would have included these.

-Do you believe your visual product will fulfill its intended purpose? Why or why not? What could you have done differently?

References
UMGC. (n.d.). Lesson 5: Images and Influence. Retrieved April 16, 2022, from https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/umuc/tus/comm/… 
UMGC (n.d.) Symbolism and Iconography. Retrieved from April 1, 2022, from https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/umuc/tus/comm/…University of Maryland Global Campus (2022).
Three Types of Audience Analysis. UMGC.edu https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/umuc/tus/comm/comm207/2222/learning-resource-list/three-types-of-audience-analysis.html?ou=645036
This is where you can find ALL 3 Images
https://cathe.com/can-ingredients-in-dark-chocolat… 
https://www.slhn.org/blog//2020/why-dark-chocolate… 
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270272#l…

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Something as simple as a selfie shared by a friend or a photo of a club sandwich can be an
object of persuasion. Whether you consciously register it or not, every image that you
consume is trying to influence you to some degree. This is why we must always question
the images we see and the context in which they are being shared. For example, a friend
may have gotten “glammed up” to take a selfie that is all smiles and shared it on social
Course Resource
media to show how happy they are. However, you may know that your friend is actually
going through a difficult time in their life. Is the smiling selfie an accurate representation
Lesson 5: Images and Influence
of reality or is it staged and superficial? Is it being used to persuade a certain audience
Part A. The Persuasive Power of Images
Whatever the intent behind an image, it is important to understand the ways in which
that everything is OK?
images can be influential and even misleading, and where the gray areas are.
Stop for a moment and think of an advertisement you saw on TV or a photo in your social
media feed that made you feel something or want to do something. Was the image of a
product you wanted to buy? Was it a selfie shared by a friend or family member? Was it a
funny meme? If it depicted a food product, did it make you hungry? What kind of reaction
did you have? Why did you have this reaction?
Resources
How Do Different Types of Images Affect Us?
For an introduction to how different graphic media influence us, Chapter
4: Visual Truth, Visual Lies (http://ezproxy.umgc.edu/login?
url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
direct=true&db=e025xna&AN=474113&site=edslive&scope=site&profile=edsebook&ebv=EB&ppid=pp_129)
(129–
160) of Visual Persuasion is an illuminating read. Are photo ads more
“real” than line drawings? Is scotch whiskey more enticing when shown in
a comic book-style illustration or a luscious color photograph? Which
medium is best for promoting a social cause, and how? Pages 129–141
are especially germane to this part of the lesson.
Persuasion as a Goal of Visual Communication
The desire to persuade underlies much of our communication, whether spoken, written, or
visual.
Tourist Taking a Selfie
According to the Encyclopedia of Communication Theory (Littlejohn & Foss, 2009),
“Persuasion—the activity of creating, reinforcing, or modifying beliefs, attitudes, or
behaviors—is a major underlying motivation for human communication and the
fountainhead of communication studies.”
We will focus now on two different forms of visual persuasion, unintentional and
intentional.
Unintentional Visual Persuasion
Ice Cream Parlor Hijinks
According to The Handbook of Communication Science, much persuasive discourse can
be seen in off-the-cuff responses” and does not require a strong degree of agency or
forethought on the part of the person generating the message (Berger, Roloff, & RoskosEwoldsen, 2010).
What this means is that most of the time we are not conscious that we are being
persuaded or that we are trying to persuade; the act of persuasion is unintentional. For
example, take the candid, off-the-cuff, photo above of the mother and her three sons. It
looks to be a quick family snapshot to show a silly moment. We may think nothing of it.
However, depending on the context and the audience, there could be unintentional layers
of persuasion, such as the fact that they are standing in front of a sign that says, “Ice
Cream and Coffee House.” Perhaps this persuades a viewer who is on a diet to think about
how they want to indulge in an ice cream; perhaps it persuades someone who is a mother
of girls that it would be more fun to have boys; perhaps it alienates a viewer who has a
different cultural background or depresses someone who is lactose-intolerant. The photo
Lucky Strike Box, Circa 1944
Source: Alf van Beem, Wikimedia Commons
could also, of course, persuade viewers that this is a fun family with an irreverent sense of
humor who enjoys spending time together.
These are all possible reactions that one may have to the seemingly innocent and silly
family photo; this family photo reinforces the notion that every image has the potential to
carry with it facets of unintentional persuasion.
Intentional Visual Persuasion
When the act of persuasion is intentional, the image’s color, composition, and use of
symbols and other elements can strategically influence our opinion or behavior.
“Persuasive efforts, especially those that are the product of marketing departments and
political campaigns, are carefully constructed and consciously orchestrated” (Berger,
Roloff, & Roskos-Ewoldsen, 2010).
Take for example the Lucky Strike cigarette box from 1944. The jade green color was
specifically chosen to target women and make smoking a non-taboo and seemingly posh
gesture. Edward Bernays, head of the marketing campaign for the American Tobacco
Company, came up with the idea to market this green color as fashionable for women. He
held events in which socialites of the time wore the same green color to produce an
association. This is a prime example of a conscious and carefully orchestrated intentional
persuasive effort by a marketing campaign.
The use of the green color for the Lucky Strike cigarette box “also gives a nod to the
fundamentally social nature of persuasion and how it is seen as a social skill” (Berger,
Roloff, & Roskos-Ewoldsen, 2010). The green color was used to promote the cigarettes in
a social way, calling upon consumers, especially women, to see the product as a way to
engage with and be part of high society. Consider what we learned in Week 3 about color
and how it can be used to communicate visually: The creators of ads are well-aware of
how color can be used to persuade.
Propaganda can be disseminated on posters, pamphlets, films, photos, ad campaigns, TV
Resources
shows, websites, news broadcasts, cartoons, comic strips, newspapers, radio shows,
YouTube channels, and so forth. In present society, bots and algorithms can be used to
create “computational propaganda,” which allows for fake and biased news to spread all
The Art of Appeal
over social media (Dziak, 2000; Wikipedia, n.d.a).
To learn more about the man behind the Lucky Strike box, browse the
Week 5 learning resource Public Relations or Propaganda? Edward
Bernays and the Founding of PR
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/umuc/tus/comm/comm207/2222
/learning-resource-list/public-relations-or-propaganda–edward-bernaysand-the-founding-.html?ou=645036) . Find out how Bernays branded
cigarettes “torches of liberty” and bolstered the appeal of Ivory soap
through floating soap sculptures.
And, if you’re interested in advertising or public relations, either as a
consumer or as someone looking for a career path, browse Advertising
and Public Relations
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/umuc/tus/comm/comm207/2222
/learning-resource-list/advertising-and-public-relations.html?
ou=645036) . It’s worth it if only for the see-it-to-believe-it classic ads.
Part B. Visual Propaganda
The example above is a good segue into a specific persuasive tool: propaganda
(http://ezproxy.umgc.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
direct=true&db=ers&AN=125600368&site=eds-live&scope=site&profile=edsebook)
.
According to Dziak (2020), propaganda is the “process of using words, images, and other
forms of communication to sway the opinions of others.” If you think this sounds like what
you just saw in the Lucky Strike ad, you’re right. Bernays freely used the term for his work.
Historically, propaganda had a positive connotation. It has its roots in the efforts of mostly
religious groups to spread—or propagate—their gospel.
Ever since World War II and the Nazi party’s use of the term, however, we typically
associate propaganda with attempts of authority figures, governments, and activist groups
to sway our views. We do not associate propaganda with objective messages, or even the
enticing displays used in advertisements. Rather, we understand it to consist of selected
facts—or carefully chosen imagery—to promote a group’s agenda. Because the contents
are biased and exclude alternative points of view, the message is one-sided and intends to
produce an emotional rather than a rational response from the viewer.
Examples: Propaganda in Indonesia
Below are some photos of propaganda posters taken by the lesson author. Note that
these posters each target a different audience.
You may infer from these examples that not all propaganda is “bad.” Just because it
presents one side in attempt to sway the viewer does not mean that the purpose is
always to harm or deceive.
Indonesian Nationalist Group, Poster, 1947
Poster from the collection of the National Archives of the Netherlands; Photo by Ding Ren
Above is a poster created in 1947 by an Indonesian nationalist group during the war
of independence against the Netherlands. This poster is an example of propaganda,
as it was designed to sway the opinion of the general public to the pro-revolution
side. By invoking the symbol of Borobudur (a ninth-century Buddhist temple in
central Java), the designers of the poster were trying to tap into the viewers’
national pride and connect an ancient past to the modern fight for independence.
Here, you can see the use of a cultural symbol used to reach a particular audience
for a very specific—and very persuasive—purpose!
Indonesian Nationalist Group, Poster in English, 1945
Source: Poster from the collection of the National Archives of the Netherlands; photo by Ding Ren.
This poster, also created during the Indonesian revolution, was designed with
American soldiers as the target audience; it is therefore written in English and has
references to freeing colonies. In 1945, shortly after the Japanese surrender, Allied
forces began re-taking formerly Japanese-occupied areas, including the Dutch
colony of Indonesia. Indonesian revolutionaries, fighting for independence from the
Dutch, expected American soldiers to arrive in Java, and thus focused their
propaganda on democracy and America’s own war of independence. Photographs
from the city of Surabaya (where this poster was found) also show quotes from the
Declaration of Independence and other slogans aimed at American soldiers.
How Does Propaganda Work?
Propaganda is not necessarily meant only for domestic consumption, as you saw with the
second example from WWII-era Indonesia, above. We will also see how the US federal
government used post-war modern art to showcase America as a place of free-thinkers, a
country where new art styles could flourish (in contrast to the Soviet Union). Exhibitions
that were originally shown in New York at the Museum of Modern Art later traveled
around Europe to promote American creativity and free-market liberalism.
1. Socialist Realism
Propaganda is used to persuade and manipulate, most commonly in a political or social
setting. Those on either side of a political or social issue often try to sway those who are
seemingly neutral to one side or the other. Commercially, an advertisement such as a TV
commercial or billboard may be used to place the idea of a product into a consumer’s
mind, whether they were intending to purchase the product or not. This can be seen in
the Lucky Strike example above, where the green color is placed in the target consumer’s
mind through social and sponsored marketing events. Think about what you learned in
Week 4 about demographics and psychographics. Bernays and his team induced a positive
feeling in women with a jade green color that paid off in cigarette sales!
How effective propaganda is therefore depends on the intended audience and how the
content is presented. The most direct kind of propaganda is focused on a well-defined
target audience. In the social cause arena, the main approach would be to convince a type
of voter with particular demographic and psychographic traits—perhaps an unmarried
male who resides in an urban area—that one reform issue is best solved in a particular way
and to support that side, either through a donation or with a vote. Oftentimes,
propaganda products attack the opposition by bringing up unfavorable information.
(Littlejohn & Foss, 2009)
Propaganda in History: A Few Examples
Propaganda dates back as far as recorded history. While today we view the term
negatively, it does not necessarily have to be a negative thing. All imagery meant to
persuade us, to impact our actions, can be seen as propaganda in some sense. In this
section, we will focus on a few historical examples from the twentieth century. During this
century, both communist and capitalist countries used imagery to influence their citizens
and espouse the benefits of their economic and political systems. We will see examples of
Socialist Realism Propaganda Example: The Green Bridge
(1) Socialist Realism, an art movement supported by the Soviet Union; (2) Chinese posters
developed during Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution, a period of radical social and political
upheaval in China; and (3) anti-Socialist ads created by the US government after World
In 1932, the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin made Socialist Realism the official state art
movement, with the government setting rules and standards for artists to follow. Focusing
on imagery of workers—laborers and farmers (the hammer and sickle)—Socialist Realism
War II.
can also be seen in the grand sculptures of socialist philosophers like Marx and Engels and
Soviet leaders like Lenin and Stalin that decorated Eastern Europe. According to the Salem
Press Encyclopedia, “workers were to be presented as heroes, capitalists as exploitative
and malevolent, and Stalin himself as a benevolent father or a brave leader” (Socialist
Realism, 2019).
The above photograph is an example of a Socialist Realist monument in Vilnius, Lithuania.
The man on the left holding the brick is meant to glorify construction, and the one on the
right holding the rocket is meant to celebrate industry. The heroic stance of these figures,
with arms open and knee propped up, is meant to persuade us that the working class
should be paid attention to.
2. Cultural Revolution
Following a period of political failures, Mao Zedong, Chairman of the Communist Party of
China, initiated the Cultural Revolution. This meant a complete repudiation of Chinese
historical-cultural legacies and the establishment of Mao as the center of a new cultural
epoch. The Revolution was a consolidation of power that led to the jailing and deaths of
those whom Mao deemed enemies or counterrevolutionaries.
Similar to Socialist Realist art, the art of the Cultural Revolution put the worker—and Mao
—at the center. As can be seen in the image below, a smiling Mao Zedong radiates like the
sun while happy workers, soldiers, and ethnic minorities march forward. Such posters had
government slogans printed on them, while also carrying clear visual messages for the
largely illiterate farmer population at which they were aimed. The posters were meant to
solidify Maoist thought among the people and influence the average Chinese citizen’s
view of the Communist Party. Read the below quote for a deeper understanding of the
aesthetics of the posters:
Chinese propaganda posters and related image forms used aesthetic and affective
techniques that helped legitimize the Party-State by closing the gap between
everyday experience and political ideology. Propaganda posters were designed to
create a new type of “political” subject wholly identified with the State, without any
interruption of “social” responses such as critique, desire, irony or resistance. They
were supposed to put into practice the aesthetic-political principle of unity, as
Cultural Revolution Propaganda Example: The Sunshine of Mao Zedong Thought
Illuminates the Path of the Great Proletariat Cultural Revolution
Ask Yourself
You read about some of the symbols used in Socialist Realism (the brick
symbolizing construction and the rocket symbolizing industry). Do you
see any symbolism in this image? Any culturally specific use of color or
imagery? Any design principles that confer meaning?
conceptualised by Mao. (Hemelryk, 2014)
3. USIA and Modern Art
Abstract Expressionism, a movement in post-war American modern art exemplified by
artists such as Jackson Pollock (1912–1956), was in many ways the opposite of Socialist
Realism and the propaganda art of communist states. For this reason, the United States
State Department and the United States Information Agency (USIA), along with the
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, organized traveling exhibitions of Abstract
Expressionist artists. While the work is not overtly
propaganda to our eyes, it was used to project American
Click the arrows to see more examples of propaganda, including in product promotion.
Ask yourselves, are these examples “innocent”? Or are they harmful or deceptive? Why do
you think so?
freedom and creativity in the face of communism (Segal,
2016).
A Few Easy Pieces of Propaganda
Below is a short video on the role of the federal
government in the war of propaganda between the
United States and Soviet Union. Note how the Ad
Council video goes beyond hyperbole in its exaggeration
of the issue. This is part of what makes it a piece of
propaganda: You are definitely not seeing a fair
treatment of both sides!
Jackson Pollock Drip-Painting
on the Floor
0:00
How the Ad Council and Federal Government Influenced America’s
Perception of Socialism After WWII
Transcript
Oana Godeanu-Kenworthy, Associate Teaching Professor, American Studies at the
Department of Global and Intercultural Studies, Miami University in Ohio
World War II… Coca-Cola Fights On!
During World War II, Coca-Cola embarked on an international campaign to portray
This video excerpts cartoon strips produced by the Ad Council and the US government to
influence how Americans viewed the Soviets and their political ideology.
As you can see, the Cold War was fought on many different “battlefields.” A war of
ideologies comes down to public opinion and public mindsets, a fact exploited by leaders
and corporations around the world.
the beverage as an all-American product uniting people from all around the world.
Here, Coca-Cola is broadcasting its ability to help out on the home front, hydrating
women serving the war effort in factories.
World War II Victory Garden Poster
During World War II, the United States faced labor and transportation shortages and
therefore wanted families to grow their own fruits and vegetables. “Victory garden”
posters—and even the phrase itself—were meant to encourage home farming as a
patriotic activity. They also indirectly aided “…the war effort, and were considered a
civil ‘morale booster’…gardeners [felt] empowered by their contribution of labor and
rewarded by the produce grown.” (Retrieved from “Victory garden as a form of
propaganda?” (Wikipedia, n.d.b; Wessels Living History Farm, n.d.).
World War I John Bull Recruiting Poster
In this British World War I recruiting poster, the figure pointing a finger would have
been immediately recognizable as John Bull, a fictional embodiment of national
identity similar to the American Uncle Sam (Johnson, n.d.). Just in case the viewer is
Soviet Photo Alteration: Where’s Yezhov?
confused about his patriotic duty, Bull wears a vest embossed with a British flag.
power consolidation was purging members of the
Communist Party that Stalin deemed enemies. After their
During Stalin’s reign in the Soviet Union, a common form of
execution, the entire memory of the person had to be
removed. Photographs were manipulated to erase the
person, as can be seen in the example below, where Soviet
secret police official Nikolai Yezhov is removed from a
photograph of himself and Stalin (Smith, 2020).
Image manipulation is, of course, not confined to the past
or to leaders of foreign countries. As we discussed above,
producers of ads and other media use images to make the
viewer feel or act a certain way (be happy, donate now, buy
Yezhov Goes Missing
this, vote for me, etc.). This sometimes involves not just
producing images but altering them in ethically
questionable ways. Below we will discuss a few more recent examples of governmental
parties and media (mis)using and manipulating images.
TIME Magazine and OJ Simpson
Here’s a less recent but highly controversial example of image alteration, this time by a
media outlet. In 1994, TIME Magazine ran a story on the OJ Simpson trial after Simpson
Woman and Man in 1930s Soviet Poster
Here is some more Soviet art; this example is from a regional history museum in
Ukraine.
had been accused of murdering his former wife, Nicole Brown, and her friend, Ronald
Goldman. TIME altered the photograph of OJ Simpson on its cover to make him look
darker. Many were quick to point out the racial implications—a blacker man would read
guiltier and more threatening to the intended audience—and to decry the magazine’s
choice. TIME denied any race-based motivations, stating that the magazine simply wanted
to make the cover visually compelling. Eventually, the managing editor issued an apology
(Schifellite, 2020).
Part C. Image Manipulation
So far, we’ve explored the concepts of visual persuasion and propaganda. What happens
when images are not just carefully organized or staged, but changed after production, to
affect how people think and feel about the subject of the image? Let’s take a little time to
look at a few examples of photo manipulation, or the alteration of photos after they’ve
been taken, starting with one of the most famous cases of Soviet photo manipulation used
to “erase” people from the historical record.
All magazines and newspapers—and media sites on the web—make image choices every
day to convey certain feelings or to create certain narratives. What photos are chosen in
the months before an election (a jubilant candidate, a sulking party member) tell us how
that source views the race and whom it favors. Persuasion through image choice is quite
standard in the media. Persuasion through image manipulation, as many believed TIME to
have attempted in the case above, is much different.
Canadian Green Party and the Water Cup
Our final example in this section concerns manipulation not by a governmental or media
entity, but by a political party. In 2019, the Canadian Green Party doctored an image on
its website showing party leader Elizabeth May holding a cup. The original cup was paper
and disposable, but party members changed the photograph to have it appear as a
reusable cup with a metal straw. The person who altered the photograph obviously
In an era of fake news and disinformation—especially online—we have to be active in
questioning the imagery that we see. How can we know that what we see represents
reality? Is what we are looking at accurate, unbiased, unaltered? Can we ever be sure
when all images, even those that are not manipulated, are in some way meant to be
manipulative and influence our emotions or behaviors?
wanted to heighten May’s environmental credentials and suggest to the viewer that the
party leader always carried a reusable cup with her rather than purchase a single-use
beverage container. May expressed shock and outrage at the manipulated photo while
Ethical considerations are often shrouded in shades of gray. Context and intent matter
when making ethical determinations. Often, the best way to approach ethical questions is
stating that the paper cup was compostable and thus did not need to be altered in the
to be informed, know your own ethical line, and be consistent in your decision-making
first place to appear environmentally friendly (Cecco, 2019).
process. For example, is there an ethical distinction between a sponsored Instagram post
by an influencer and Stalin’s use of photo manipulation to remove executed political
enemies from the historical record? At first, this question might appear laughable, and
Resources
quite obvious in its answer—of course there is a difference. But fundamentally, at their
core, both images are meant to influence our thinking or behavior, and therefore
Can You Spot a Fake?
The Week 5 learning resource Can People Identify Original and
Manipulated Photos of Real-World Scenes?
manipulate us in some way. If we think of the ethics of manipulation via images as a
continuum from social media posts all the way through to Soviet erasure, each one of us
would draw the line between ethical and not somewhere—perhaps we would all draw it at
a different point. Therefore, the question for you is, where do you draw the line?
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/dam/coursecontent/tus/comm/comm207/document/CanPeopleIdentifyOriginalAndManipulatedPhotos.pdf?
ou=645036)
provides a look at just how prevalent image manipulation
is—and what the implications are for the legal system and everyday life.
Part D. Images and Ethics
With all we’ve explored above, you may be asking yourself, “Where do I draw the line?
When is it okay to attempt to persuade with an image, and when am I being unethical?”
Image ethics can be defined as how we share, create, and consume images and the
decisions involved in doing so. On a very basic level, ethics are thought to be a kind of
code defining our personal decisions and placing them into categories such as good or
bad. As we all know, nothing is ever so easily categorized, and with roughly 7.3 trillion
digital photos being taken (MyLio.com, 2020), shared, and consumed in the year 2020
alone, we can’t possibly believe that every photo comes with the best ethical intentions
even if it couldn’t properly be called “bad.”
The following cases will help you define where to draw the line.
Ethical or Not? Two Civil War Case Studies
The Case of the Moved Body
As we have seen, manipulation of photographs is nothing new. In fact, it dates back
to the very earliest days of the medium. War photography is still a striking form of
documentary photography, meant to show the hardships and impact of warzones to
those outside them. War photographers are trying to tell a story—create a narrative.
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/dam/course-content/tus/comm/comm207/image/lesson-5/Gardner41.png?ou=645036)
Alexander Gardner, Plate 41. The Home of a Rebel Sharpshooter, 1863,
photograph
In the below example from the Library of Congress Civil War photograph collection,
we will see the work of photographer Alexander Gardner (1821–1882) and
members of his staff. Gardner was a Scottish immigrant and supporter of the Union
whose photographs were meant to highlight his patriotism and belief in Union
cause. While he is known for his photographs of the war, portraits of Abraham
Lincoln, and photographs of the execution of the plotters of Lincoln’s assassination,
we will read about a controversial side of his photography. Work in the 1970s by
historian William Frassanito uncovered cases of in which Gardner moved bodies and
portrayed the same corpses as Union or Confederate dead depending on the
narrative he was trying to portray. Is this ethical? Does knowing what Gardner did
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/dam/course-content/tus/comm/comm207/image/lesson-5/Gardner40.png?ou=645036)
Alexander Gardner, Alternate Exposure for Plate 40. A Sharpshooter’s Last
Sleep, 1863, photograph
change how we see his photographs? Does it alter the effect these photos have on
us?
Click here to see the full version of each photo and to get a sense of the
overall composition and musket placement. You can enlarge each image by
On the left, see an excerpt from Plate 41, a photograph of a Confederate soldier
killed in the Battle of Gettysburg. Frassanito determined this soldier was the same
clicking it.
individual photographed in “A Sharpshooter’s Last Sleep,” viewed on the right as an
excerpt from Plate 40. Frassanito deduced that Gardner had moved this soldier from
the open battlefield to the more picturesque “sharpshooter’s den” shown in Plate
41. Furthermore, the musket picturesquely placed near the soldier in the photos was
not used by sharpshooters and is likely a prop Gardner employed. Frassanito makes
the case that this body may have been one of the last to be buried, leaving Gardner
with few subjects left and causing him to move the body for various photographs.
As the Library of Congress states, “Gardner’s story succeeded in transforming this
soldier into a particular character in the drama, a man who suffered a painful, lonely,
unrecognized death” (Library of Congress, n.d.a).
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/dam/course-content/tus/comm/comm207/image/lesson-5/Gardner41Full.jpeg?ou=645036)
Alexander Gardner, Plate 41. The Home of a Rebel Sharpshooter, 1863,
photograph
(https://leocontent.umgc.edu/content/dam/course-content/tus/comm/comm207/image/lesson-5/Gardner40Full.jpeg?ou=645036)
Alexander Gardner, Alternate Exposure for Plate 40. A Sharpshooter’s Last
Sleep, 1863, photograph
Knowing that photographers employ techniques such as lighting, perspective, and
placement of items to present a cleaner or more dramatic narrative, one must
always ask: Is the true story being told? Where is the line between telling a story
and distorting the truth? In the above historic example, one could see the honor of
the soldier as being erased when the events leading to his death were re-staged for
effect. On the other hand, one could see Gardner’s artistry as giving meaning to the
soldier’s death and presenting a truer-than-life depiction of the devastation of war.
Gardner himself held that making strategic adjustments to a scene was no different
from the techniques studio photographers employed in creating portraits (Robinson,
n.d.).
The Case of Confused Identity
Our second example from Gardner and his staff concerns the identity of bodies as
either Union or Confederate soldiers (Library of Congress, n.d.b).
Click here to see the full version of each photo. You can enlarge each image by
clicking it.
Below you will see two photographs. Plate 36 on the left shows men identified by
Gardner as Confederate soldiers and traitors to the Union whose actions brought
them their death. Plate 37 shows soldiers identified by Gardner as Union soldiers.
Along with the photograph, Gardner included a description of the peaceful Union
dead, waxing poetic on the sacrifice made by the men. However, Frassanito shows
these two photographs to be of the same men, from simply a different angle.
On the photos below, the men are numbered, and you can also see the shape of a
diamond. In both photographs, the diamo

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