The problem of the representation of violence and human suffering will be discussed with reference to Susan Sontag’s essay Regarding The Pain Of Others, where she poses the much-discussed question of “what to do with the feelings that have been aroused, the knowledge that has been communicated”. Sontag asks whether in fact the visual representation of atrocities merely serves the suppressed desires for spectacular images, or do they perhaps merely generate boredom, cynicism and apathy? Many critics note that different ethical standards with regard to protection of personal rights are applied depending on the background and social status of the people depicted. These issues will be debated by Kathrin Röggla, vice president of the Akademie der Künste, in conversation with architect and scholar Eyal Weizman and photographer and curator Mark Sealy.
Susan Sontag: Regarding The Pain Of Others, New York 2003
W.J.T. Mitchell: Cloning Terror: The War of Images, 9/11 to the Present, Chicago 2011
Carolin Emcke: Weil es sagbar ist. Über Zeugenschaft und Gerechtigkeit, Frankfurt a.M. 2013
Ricardo Menéndez Salmón: Medusa, Berlin 2012
Eyal Weizman: The Least of All Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence from Arendt to Gaza, London 2012