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"That Photo": Police and the Power of Representation

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Abstract:

During the early morning hours of August 31, 1970, Philadelphia Daily News photographer Elwood Smith took a picture of members of Philadelphia’s Black Panther Party being strip-searched at gunpoint by Philadelphia police officers. The photograph spawned almost instantaneous, passionate responses filling the Daily News’ editorial page for more than a week. In these responses, readers both lambasted and praised the newspaper for printing the photo, decrying the image as a degrading portrayal of the Black Panthers and lauding the paper for granting audiences the ability to witness for themselves the early morning Philadelphia police raids. Drawing upon local print news coverage, editorials, and letters to the editor, this paper argues that Elwood Smith’s photograph captured not only a poignant moment of police action. The multilayered photo simultaneously drew attention to the tenuous space occupied by the Daily News vis a vis city politics and the Philadelphia Police Department. Varied responses to the photo served as a demonstration of both the authority of the image and the news organization that chose to print Elwood Smith’s work.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

polic (151), philadelphia (111), news (105), daili (91), 1970 (76), panther (69), photo (67), photograph (65), black (56), septemb (45), 1 (42), august (41), power (40), pg (38), imag (36), bulletin (36), 31 (35), depart (34), raid (32), paper (31), editori (31),

Author's Keywords:

photograph, police, race, representation
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Association:
Name: International Communication Association
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http://www.icahdq.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p233094_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Maurantonio, Nicole. ""That Photo": Police and the Power of Representation" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, TBA, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, May 21, 2008 <Not Available>. 2014-09-22 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p233094_index.html>

APA Citation:

Maurantonio, N. , 2008-05-21 ""That Photo": Police and the Power of Representation" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, TBA, Montreal, Quebec, Canada Online <PDF>. 2014-09-22 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p233094_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: During the early morning hours of August 31, 1970, Philadelphia Daily News photographer Elwood Smith took a picture of members of Philadelphia’s Black Panther Party being strip-searched at gunpoint by Philadelphia police officers. The photograph spawned almost instantaneous, passionate responses filling the Daily News’ editorial page for more than a week. In these responses, readers both lambasted and praised the newspaper for printing the photo, decrying the image as a degrading portrayal of the Black Panthers and lauding the paper for granting audiences the ability to witness for themselves the early morning Philadelphia police raids. Drawing upon local print news coverage, editorials, and letters to the editor, this paper argues that Elwood Smith’s photograph captured not only a poignant moment of police action. The multilayered photo simultaneously drew attention to the tenuous space occupied by the Daily News vis a vis city politics and the Philadelphia Police Department. Varied responses to the photo served as a demonstration of both the authority of the image and the news organization that chose to print Elwood Smith’s work.

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Similar Titles:
Refashioning the Force: Don Fair, the Philadelphia Police Department, and the Politics of Image Making

Black Panther, Red Eagle: "Power" and Ideology for the Black Panther Party and the American Indian Movement

All Power to the People The Black Panther Party and the Community they serve: A critical investigation into the Black Panthers Platform and Program

Black Power Disavowed: Black Power Philosophy in SNCC’s Atlanta Project Position Papers, 1966


 
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