Definition December 2021 - Web


fire from the Congolese military. It summarises the fearless, albeit tactless, trade of the war journalist – while also serving as a timely reminder of how journalists need to have a dose of humility in complex situations. “But there’s no hard line with ethics; there’s no blanket answer of what you should and shouldn’t do. It’s a judgement call – and that’s why it’s important to constantly question yourself,” says Iannacone. “I always go back to the Kevin Carter photograph, The Vulture and the Little Girl. The famine- stricken child turned out to be a boy, but Carter didn’t have enough time to realise this. He received a lot of criticism, despite winning a Pulitzer Prize and being praised for the widespread awareness it raised for famine. Many asked, how could he photograph a child that was about to be attacked? Calling it inhumane and unethical for taking the picture before chasing the vulture away. But, I would argue that if he had not captured this moment, there would not have been the same spark of outrage about world hunger.” She adds: “It’s tough. Ellen Kuras, one of the best female cinematographers in the world, decided not to take a photograph

they’re functioning at full form,” explains DOP Elisa L Iannacone, who is experienced when it comes to documenting those in a position of despair. She’s worked in more than 30 countries during times of conflict and humanitarian crisis, and is a survivor of trauma herself. “I was sexually assaulted when I was 23, and know that if I was approached at that time, I might have said something I could come to regret years later. We need to implement every possible sensitivity and make it incredibly clear as to what our intentions are with that story.” Taking the time to inform your subjects is paramount to avoid a repeat of uncomfortable situations. An example is when Steve McCurry pulled a girl out of an Afghan classroom to interview her. She is from a culture where it’s taboo for her to be alone with a man, and although McCurry maintained they shared a wonderful connection, she claimed she was scared for her life. Another instance was documented by author Edward Behr in his book Anyone Here Been Raped & Speaks English? The title is a quote from a rather insensitive TV reporter, that Behr heard canvassing Belgian settlers fleeing

FORGOTTEN WARS Prison imagery represents the displacement felt by Cameroonian refugees

“I always advise fellow documentary filmmakers to have a ‘point person’ – whether family, friend or colleague, who knows where you are at all times, so they can check in”


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