Cal State San Marcos

War Photojournalist James Nachtwey

The video tonight was on James Nachtwey, a news and war photographer whose pictures are rather powerful.  Nachtwey has covered several wars dating back decades.  The images he catches tell the stories of the victims of war and violence and can at times be truly graphic.  Some contained famine victims, and even military in the act of firing their weapons.  You can’t question Nachtwey’s courage, for he’s had to put himself in extreme danger to capture the photos that he’s taken.  In the video he says that at one point in his career he started focusing more on critical social change in the world.  He described his arrival as a “elevator to hell.”  One of his images was of a man who had lost an arm and a leg and was trying to support his family.  People saw the image and donated money to a fund in the man’s name.  It is learned that the man now lives in a house and is able to support his family.  All of this just because of James Nachtwey’s photo.  Nachtwey also took pictures of the terrorist attacks on 9/11.  He said that for the past 20 years he thought he had been covering several stories but had finally realized that he had been covering one single story the entire time, the story of violence and humanity. It is up to photographers like James Nachtwey to reveal to the rest of the world the true effects of war and violence on earth and its inhabitants, and not what some politicians would like us to believe. 

James Nachtwey

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