In class, we were talking about a collection of books under the name “I Live Here.” Each of the four books are told through journals, stories, images, and graphics. They revolve around displaced people who wrote these stories as a means to voice the atrocities that are happening in their countries. The books are a dialogue of human suffering which are told through pictures and text. Through the use of pictures and text we are asked to pay attention to these people by making a connection with them through their stories. 

   Throughout the books personal stories are being told by pictures and text as a form communication. I thought that the use of text and pictures was a good idea because it’s through this form of storytelling that gives us a glimpse into their world from their point of view.  The Chechen War in Ingushetia, the brothels and ethnic cleansing in Burma, the murders in Cuidad Juarez, and the AIDS crisis in Malawi could not have been told by words or pictures alone. When we look at the pictures we see people getting murdered, raped, beaten, etc. The message is quite clear that we are to feel the pain that these people are going through. Most of these pictures are graphic because these stories are real in which we are being subjected into how one person views one’s country from his/her point of view. The text acts as the anchor to the photos because if the text were not available then we would have to decipher the photos by ourselves. If a person reads the text and sees the pictures it may arrive at different destinations. Some may turn away from the books due to their graphic nature while others would keep reading them to learn more about what is going on.

    The pictures and text create a bridge which allows us to get a deep meaning by unraveling a world that most of us were unaware of. The pictures and text are also a conduit to help express the pain of the writers. The books give us a deeper perspective into the lives of these displaced people. They also create a message that wants us to learn about what is going on in parts of the world. By becoming a part of that world we expand our horizons and learn that there are some people who don’t have the same luxuries that we have. Therefore by placing the pictures and text together the books create a story that is graphic yet informative.   

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8X9W1_beJQ

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