portraiture / self-portraiture and the selfie – due april 2 – 1000

 

Read the essay ‘How to See Yourself’ by Nicholas Mirzoeff. Use the first half of your paper to summarize Mirzoeff’s ideas. You should touch upon issues such as social class and technology (painting vs. photography for example). What do portraits tell us about not only the individual pictured but about the society in which they are made. For the remaining 500 words, still using Mirzoeff’s essay as a guide, write about portraiture and self / portraiture in your own life. For example, what role do family photographs and portraits function in your family? Are they considered ‘sacred’? How do they anchor or introduce storytelling? Additionally, In a broader cultural sense do you think the ‘Selfie’ is a significant indicator of the culture we live in now? How? Overall in your paper, avoid sweeping generalizations. Your goal is to write a thoughtful personal paper. Try to make reasonable assertions anchored by specific images (historical portraits, family portraits, high school portraits, celebrity portraits). If you cannot reproduce them in your paper, describe them in detail.  Your paper should do these three things:

1.  Summarize the main arguments / ideas in Mirzoeff’s essay

2.  Discuss the role of portraiture in your own family’s history

3.  Discuss the cultural significance of the ‘Selfie’

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