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Book review - Essay Example

Loyd certainly comes across as a cold-hearted, nihilistic, self-loathing, egocentric drug addict – at first. It takes a lot of contemplation and a journey to the end of the book to realize he is far more than that – he is brutally honest. Analyzing his time in Bosnia, I cannot profess to be more schooled in how to achieve ones dreams as a professional photographer. I can, however, admire a man who, having no training in photography, no desire to take pictures (at first), and who believed war to be necessary and a perfect representation of the flawed human character, was able to discover a altruistic need within himself. I found myself admiring Loyd more and more as I read accounts of him rescuing woman trapped and doomed to die. Or when he carried a child with a bullet wound in her head to a UN peacekeeping tent, demanding they see to her even though they said she was a lost cause. Loyd fell into a pit of indifference throughout the entire war – he didn't care what the outcome was, he didn't care if he died there. Yet out of this unimaginable and unrelatable situation, he realized that the world needed to see suffering for what it truly was, and why we was able to produce some of the most shocking photographs of the war. To describe my reaction when reading this book as that of shock would not be doing it justice. The sickening feeling of despair and disgust when reading some of the chilling accounts of human injustice did not alleviate through the book. Loyd vividly describes one such

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scene when stumbling through the town of Stupni Do, where the Bosnian Croat HVO army had massacred every living thing in the town mere hours before. After describing the scene, he adds a particularly useful revelation in saying “And there was something more than what you saw, smelled and felt inside. The atmosphere. It chainsawed through your senses and squirmed glass over your body; shut your eyes and you could still hear the screaming. For whatever had been sucked out of that place, something else had been pumped in. An open scar in the ether; pleading chokes scabbing the edges. Some empty black infinity inside that spat and laughed. Ever had a bad hallucination? You've seen nothing. Nothing” (Loyd 2002). Photography is more than just a picture. It is a representation of life. In this particular photographic expose, the war is made real in the minds of the people who view the pages. Similarly, my life is a series of snapshots, raw and laid open for all to say. I have never wanted to be a war journalist or photographer, although believe that raw journalism such as Loyd's is completely necessary. I can, however, admire and seek to replicate Loyd's desire to expose human nature in all its glory, or lack thereof. His ability to contextualize his surrounding and yet continue to work with a goal in mind is admirable. Perhaps, cynically speaking, after reading this book, I might not be so shocked as to discover the person behind the lens sometimes has to go through. I always knew that photography was more about a life experience than a job. I pondered often when reading about Loyd's experience and why he was so effective at portraying his story, in words and photographs. Loyd mentions several times how he receded his values and morals in order to see the war for what it was. He says “If you stuck to the values of home, it only hamstrung your ability to see the war
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Professor Name Day Month Year Book Review In no way is Anthony Loyd your typical journalism or photographer. In his harrowing account of the Bosnia War, he ignores the facts of the war, is not sympathetic to any particular side, and is never really moved or empathetic to the travesties that are occurring around him…
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