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Sight Gags: Sundown Town


Photo Credit: Michael David Murphy (And with thanks to Stan Banos for calling our attention to the photograph).

Our primary goal with this blog is to talk about the ways in which photojournalism contributes to a vital democratic public culture. Much of the time that means we are focusing on what purport to be more or less serious matters. But as John Stewart and Stephen Colbert often remind us, democracy needs irony, parody, and pure silliness as much as it needs serious contemplation. For our part, we will dedicate our Sunday posts to putting such momens on display in what we call “sight gags,” democracy’s nod to the ironic and/or the carnivalesque. Sometimes we will post pictures we’ve taken, or that have been contributed by others, or that we just happen to stumble across as we navigate our very visual public culture.  Sometimes the images will be pure silliness, but sometimes they will point to ironies, poignant and otherwise.  And we won’t just be limited to photography, as a robust democratic visual culture consists of much more. We typically will not comment beyond offering an identifying label, leaving the images to “speak” for themselves as much as possible. Of course we invite you to comment … and to send us images that you think capture the carnival of contemporary democratic public culture.


Sight Gags: Sundown Town


3 Responses

  1. jt says

    I believe the picture is making a statement referring to “Jim Crow”, which is synonymous with racism, and the white houses with the white car. Perhaps the angle shows the back of the stop sign to signify that nothing has really stopped after all.

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