Master of Arts (M.A.)
Degree Granting Department
Government and International Affairs
Steven Roach, Ph.D.
Bernd Reiter, Ph.D.
Holly Matthew-Dunn, Ph.D.
humanitarianism, photography, colonialism, liberalism, conflict photography
Ansel Adams, one of the world’s great photographers, once said, “There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.” This thesis will explore the relationship of the photographer, the viewer, and the photographed subject in the context of humanitarian photography, which has historically internalized a specific balance of power between the worlds of the photographer, viewer, and subject. By examining this tangible expression of the internalized world, this thesis is also performing a critical examination of humanitarianism itself with the intent of improving humanitarian practices and interior worlds. In examining these topics, this thesis will answer the following questions: What is the humanitarian gaze? And: Why is the spectatorial nature of sympathy reserved for Global South? These are questions that will lead to the core question that this thesis asks: what is the relationship between humanitarianism and colonialism?
Scholar Commons Citation
Assaad, Michelle, "The Humanitarian Gaze and the Spectatorial Nature of Sympathy" (2019). Graduate Theses and Dissertations.