Private Pictures: Soldiers' Inside View of War
Snapshots taken by American soldiers of Iraqi prisoners stripped naked, humiliated and tortured shocked the world in 2004 but, as this remarkable book relates, soldiers have taken photographs of the gruesome or sociable, shocking or mundane aspects of war for more than 100 years. Now, with the twenty-first century shift to simple digital photography and internet communications, a glut of highly disturbing images -- videos and stills -- is being posted on the inernet by western forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, with alarming results. Private Pictures traces this unacknowledged genre of photography from the origins of popular photography in the Boer War through the two World Wars, to the digital age. It discusses how the images have been used and it asks: what effect might the wider appreciation of soldiers' pictures have on the popular perception of war?