Bonding Images: Photography & Films as Act of Perpetration
Historical and contemporary cases of collective violence show an incremental use of photography and film to capture and disseminate violent acts. Recording cruelty during conflict seems a highly ritualized practice that urges the question what communicative and psychological functions these acts have? Why and how does perpetrator photography shape a binding moral world that divides ‘Us’ versus ‘Them’. These visualizing acts are commonly seen as proof of power that desensitizes the perpetrators and dehumanizes the victims This contribution focusses on the imagery of the Holocaust, looks into the functions that capturing cruelty has on the evolution of aggression (behavior, cognition & arousal) and shares some insights from the field of social neuroscience what the short term effects and long term effects are on perpetration. The camera as a crucial weapon in a divided world.