237.130 A1 Week 1 TASK 3 – Reading Response

This is a personal response to the reading of Nicholas Mirzoeff’s “Introduction” to How to See the World. London: Pelican, 2015. 1-11.

What I found most interesting within this introduction was Mirzoeff’s talk about the Blue Marble:

The Blue Marble. Captured by NASA from Apollo 17. 1972.

He starts by stating the fact that The Blue Marble is, “the most reproduced photo ever” (Mirzoeff 3). That’s a massive thing, and you immediately have to think, Why? What about this photo made its impact on society so great? I think often humans take for granted that they live in a bubble, within their own circle of people going about their lives, and to be shown that they are apart of this “blue marble” with every other person on the planet is something to behold. As Mirzoeff put it, it, “show[ed] that the world was a single unified place” (Mirzoeff 4). I think there is also something humbling and awe-inspiring about being able to see ourselves as a tiny part of this beautiful, endless universe. As a photography student as well,  I immediately thought about the ability of a photograph to move people. Mirzoeff goes on to say that with the arrival of social media and the internet, there has been an explosion of visual information; “Every two minutes, Americans alone take more photographs than were made in the entire nineteenth century.” (Mirzoeff 6). This says to me that photographs and visual information is the most eloquent way of expressing a thought, information, memory, or anything else, and that is only being proven more in the digital age.