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Discussion: Lynching on Display (content warning)


Help me study for my History class. I’m stuck and don’t understand.

WARNING: the discussion assignment for this module is an analysis of lynching photographs. This is an extremely important and powerful activity that demonstrates the relationship between visual consumption of the 1920s, racism, and terrorism. If this activity is triggering for you, do not feel like you have to participate in this discussion. The lowest discussion scores will be dropped from your overall point total.

By the 1910s and 1920s, photography was used as a means of capturing lynching so that those not present might consume the event. These primary sources can be analyzed much in the same way primary source texts can be analyzed.

Take a look at the following lynching photographs and think critically about them before engaging in a group discussion. While the victims are central to the image (and the events themselves), I want you to focus your attention on the mob participants. Then write 150 words answering the following questions:

1) which photograph did you focus on and what does it present?

2) where does the photograph take place?

3) what can you learn about the “who” and “where” of the participants in these images?

4) Please take the time to respond to at least one other students’ post.

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