Iconic images the subject of March 8 lecture

No Caption Needed
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Images of war that have appeared in the media have had an impact on U.S. policy, according to two visual culture experts who will speak at UNL on March 8.

John Lucaites of Indiana University and Robert Hariman of Northwestern University will present their research findings in a lecture at Sheldon Museum of Art from 2 to 3 p.m. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Lucaites and Hariman are two of the country's leading theorists and critics of visual culture. They will discuss a handful of photographs that are widely recognized and used repeatedly in the media by governments, commercial advertisers, journalists, grassroots advocates, bloggers and artists to shape cultural identity.

The images include: a Vietnamese girl running from a napalm attack; a sailor kissing a woman in Times Square at the end of World War II; a Chinese dissident confronting a tank in Tiananmen Square; U.S. Marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima.

"The March 8 lecture is designed to be of interest to those who care about the history and development of visual culture," said Luis Peon-Casanova, assistant professor at the College of Journalism and Mass Communication and coordinator of UNL’s Visual Literacy Program of Excellence.

Lucaites and Hariman are the authors of a book and blog (http://www.nocaptionneeded.com), each called "No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture and Liberal Democracy," dedicated to the role that photojournalism and other visual practices play in a vital democratic society.

Lucaites is professor of rhetoric and public culture in the Department of Communication and Culture and an adjunct professor of American studies at Indiana. Hariman is a professor in rhetoric and public culture in the Department of Communication Studies at Northwestern.

Their book has won numerous awards, including the 2008 Diamond Anniversary Award; the 2008 Susanne K. Langer Award for Outstanding Scholarship in the Ecology of Symbolic Form; the 2008 Winans-Wichelns Award; the 2007 Frank Luther Mott-Kappa Tau Alpha Journalism and Mass Communication Research Award; and the 2007 Bruce E. Gronbeck Political Communication Research Award.

— Marilyn Hahn, Journalism and Mass Communications