Day 10: Photo a day “Black and White”.

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10 September, 2012 by talungatales

Old typewriter

Black and white keys, black and white typing, black and white words.

When I hear the term ‘Black and white’ I usually associate it with old movies and growing up with black and white TV shows through the 70’s. Anything black and white was associated with fiction, things untangeable which we couldn’t touch and which wouldn’t touch us. Movies were fictitious, newsreels were things which reported on events far away. There was a kind of safety which doesn’t seem to be around any more.

There’s a sense of nostalgia about the era of black and white movies. They were romantic, they were an escape from reality, they were a distraction from the mundane or often difficult lives around the depression, war, and post war eras. Even this old typewriter has a sense of elegance and nostalgia about it. Mechanical things had a sense of simplicity about them. They were fun to play with. As a child these things would peak my curiosity and I would try to see how they worked. Even manual egg beaters were fun!

Children have no idea what it was like to live in the monochromatic world we grew up in – which in many ways was so much safer and protected. We were never as desensitised to violence because it was hidden behind the veil of a grey screen and black and white photography and print of newspapers. We could escape to our homes and rooms without the invasion of technology.

Today’s kids live in a bright and colourful world with realistic colour, realistic newsreel footage, all in Technicolor. Games are realistic, news reports are instant and realistic, communication is instant and there’s no taking back what’s just been said … especially on things like Facebook where so much bullying goes on.

There’s no distance as there was when things were black and white. So much is in your face. Violence and tragedy is telecast in an immediate and realistic way, it’s colourful, easy to relate to and so close even when so far away. Does this contribute to our children’s anxiety? Towards desensitising them to violence? Does it affect how they feel about themselves and their environment? What do you think?


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