Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Peter Menzel & Faith D'Aluisio

Class Assignment from Thursday September 6th, 2012:

Page 42.
Instructions answer questions under "Seeing" #'s 1 & 2.

Answer 1:

      Peter Menzel's photographs on the outside show four different families from four very different parts of the world and the foods they eat in a normal week. I feel that these photographs reveal even more then that. Each photo has its own references to each families culture, we see this in the clothes they wear, how they sit or stand, what they do or do not eat, and their dietary views. We also are keyed in to economic situations by the amounts of food, the brands, whether the food is natural/home grown or more processed and modern,`as well as the actual background of the photo itself. The background of the photo really eludes to so much we see the "class" of the family as well as where they are and what kind of conditions they live in.

Peter Menzel: 
Hungry Planet: What The World Eats "The Aboubakar Family of Chad"  
      The picture of the family in Darfur can really inspire some great inferences. In the foreground of the picture we see the dried food and the use of dry goods like grains and starches tell us that they come from a preservationist kind of life style. We can also assume that this life style comes from the unrest in Darfur since the description of the photo explains it was taken at a refugee camp there. Behind the family we can see other refugee's tents and living space, it's very close quarters there doesn't seem to be a lot of personal space which could cause conflict among residents or more of a sense of community rallying together in a time of unrest in their country. Closer behind them is their tent. With a family of six people you can only imagine the kind of space constraints within that tent this would inevitably put restrictions on what amenities, comforts or even necessities the family is physically able to own. We can now focus on the family itself. We see a mother and five kids, but where is the father? Is he one of the men lounging under the tree? Has he been taken from his family by the unrest or maybe he has fallen victim to the violence leaving his family to have to move to a refugee camp and push on without him? The possible stories of this family go on and on as every day we see more gut wrenching tales come out of the country of Darfur.

      D'Aluisio's accompanying statements shed light on the economic situation in the country and of the family by showing how much they spend on food and (if not an American family) how that spending looks in our currency. We can also see the culture and tradition of the family through what they eat and what they prepare with the foods they purchase.

Answer 2:

Compare and Contrast:

Manzel's photo of the Fernandezes family gives us a good look into the American household and what they eat. Most of the food on the table is processed and loaded with preservatives, fake sugars or dyes. Also we see a lot of pre-made and prepackaged foods, these foods are notoriously loaded down with salts and preservatives. While their healthier food choices are similar to those of the Mendoza family with raw fruit and vegetables the quantity of theses foods that the Fernandez family consumes are nowhere near the quantities of the Mendoza family.

Above: Peter Manzel: Hungry Planet: What The World Eats  "The Fernandezes Family of Texas"

 The photo of the Mendoza family shows us a different perspective not only on culture and economics but also on proper eating and how it is important to them. We see huge amounts of fresh in season fruits and vegetables with only small amounts of packaged food. While sweet drinks, pop, and candies are all available to this family in their local market they decide that healthy food and waters are the best choice for them. Now is it fair to say either one of these lifestyles is right or wrong? No, but there are definite pros to living healthy and natural in the way the Mendoza family does.

Above: Peter Manzel: Hungry Planet: What The World Eats  "The Mendozas Family of Guatemala"

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