9/11 Photo Analysis Reading Guide Name: ________________________
Read the Guardian article by Jonathan Jones, “The Meaning of 9/11’s Most Controversial Photo” and then answer the questions below.
1. What concrete details from the photo (if any) are analyzed explicitly? What details are analyzed implicitly?
They analyze the way their facial expressions are and how they are sunbathing on the wall means that these people are happy and not caring about what is going on behind them. They seem to be ignoring the terrors facing them. Through out the article the meaning switches from judging the individuals, but rather more as a way to depict history. They also talk about the water & buildings symbolizing things.
2. How and when was this photo released? Why?
The photo was not released until 5 years after ...view middle of the document...
Jones says this interpretation is flawed because it the emphasize shouldn’t be placed on judging the individuals, but rather the people represent us in our everyday life. Our lives have to keep going on no matter what tragedy strikes.
4. Jones considers and rejects multiple interpretations for the photo before settling on one. This is an example of evolving a thesis. List at least three thesis evolutions below.
1. The picture shows American’s failures to learn any deep lessons from that tragic day.
2. Today the photograph has nothing to do about judging individuals, but has become a picture about history, and about memory.
3. We are the people in the foreground and are separated from the heart of the tragedy; we change channels because that is just what we do, since we are alive.
5. How/why does Jones use Frank Rich as a source? How does this secondary source contribute to Jones’s argument?
Jones uses Frank Rich as a source because the initial view of this photograph is important for Jones to argue against it and state his own reasoning. Jones is able to explain why Rich is wrong in his interpretation and build his own argument stronger.
6. How/why does Jones use The Fall of Icarus and the corresponding ekphrastic poem by Auden, “Museé des Beaux Arts,” as sources? How do these secondary sources contribute to Jones’s argument?
The Renaissancce painter Pieter Bruegel created a similar picture to the 9/11 photo. It showed that people are falling to their death beyond the sea. In both photos these situations are very similar. The poem that is associated with the picture says “everything turns away/ quite leisurely from the disaster...” This poem matches perfectly with what is going on in the 9/11 photo because the people turn away from the tragedy behind them. He uses these sources to help expand on his argument and show that scenarios like this are common & have happened in the past.