willfast has written 6 posts for Rhetoric of the Digital Image

My Selfies are Much Better Than Yours (with a feeling so pure)

      For the entire part of my life during which I have been taking selfies (approximately the past five years), I have been taking selfies in which I am not “serious.”  I realize this now in looking back, yet never thought about it at the times of the photos.  Whether I am trying on hats … Continue reading

Summary of Oksman’s “Mourning the Family Album”

Tahneer Oksman opens her article with a brief discussion about photos taken during one’s youth, arguing that youth is the earliest period in life where one is self-reflexive; as a result, this is the first time in life we can recognize photos of ourselves as idealized versions of those selves. Oksman then moves on to summarize … Continue reading

Mourning Your Past Self

Awkward Years Project is a website on which people post photographs of their younger selves looking certain ways which at some point in their lives embarrassed them. Posting on this site, I argue, is not just for the entertainment benefit of others (as on, say, Awkward Family Photos), but also functions as a means of re-writing … Continue reading

Awkward Family Photos (and why they’re awkward)

While trying to summarize Awkward Family Photos is not the easiest task, what I have come up with will hopefully allow some insight into why this website is so popular. Photographs posted on Awkward Family Photos tend to fall into three categories of what makes them awkward: a) The first category I will call “expired … Continue reading

Why Publishing Nude Pictures of Yourself Might Not Have the Effect You Intend

Perhaps, if you have heard of “revenge porn,” you have also heard of Emma Holten, a Danish woman who had nude pictures of herself sold to a website by an ex-boyfriend when she was seventeen. Last September she released an article for Friktion magazine about her fight against a system intent on shaming women for … Continue reading

A Summary of Marianne Hirsch’s Introduction to _Family Frames_

Hirsch opens her introductory chapter with an overview of some of the key points Roland Barthes makes in a section of Camera Lucida wherein a photograph of Barthes’ mother as a child is “read” by Barthes; this description of a photograph is what Hirsch calls an “imagetext” (10). When one looks at and is “looked … Continue reading