Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Falling man by Richard Drew

Probably one of the most disturbing images i've ever seen.

This image was taken at 9.41am on September 11th 2001 shortly after the planes stuck the twin towers. The image simply shows a man falling to his death. It provoked such strong feelings in the US that it was almost written out of media history. It appeared in the news papers on September 12th and has never been seen in a US newspaper since. The American public slammed Drew for being voyeuristic, and exploitive. But Drew said that, "I did not capture this person’s death. I captured part of his life; this is what he decided to do."

We all ask the question, was he pushed? Or did he jump? America has a strong Christian belief, and the idea that anyone would commit suicide and forgo their place in heaven was disturbing. Whatever the reason, this man was in a hopeless situation which was probably felt by every victim of 9/11. This image I feel is far more disturbing than any film footage on the television, simply because we can all identify with the terrible decision he had to make. We know that maybe he was conscious as he fell; looking closely at the picture it feels as if he had accepted his fate and knew he was going to die. It’s as if he was peddling a bicycle through the air revelling in his feeling of flight. But for us, this man will never hit the ground, he will be suspended forever. It acts as a reminder that he was an ordinary man who had an extraordinarily bad day. It could have been any one of us in that situation.

1 comment:

Rose said...

I remember seeing this picture and I remember seeing a programme about people's reactions to it. I remember my own reaction to it and it is just to complicated to describe. It is at once a beautiful and awful image.