- The History of Photography: From 1839 to the Present
- Photography: A Cultural History
- Camera: A History of Photography from Daguerreotype to Digital
Have you ever wondered why the most powerful photos that go viral are also the saddest? The memory of these images is a lot stronger and I’m sure there are psychological reasons for it. But at the end of the day, I think it’s all about how we relate to each individual story. We feel sympathy for those who lost everything because of a tsunami and our hearts race when we look at a picture of two lovers kissing on the pavement in the middle of a riot.
And let’s not forget that some of the most powerful photos ever taken are a way for us to get a feeling of how it is to see your country being invaded in World War II or to get a sense of what defying a Nazi official looks like in real life.
No matter how much photography has changed and will change from now on, its part in recording our history as a civilization will be permanent. The fact that most of us have access to at least a smartphone camera is a wonderful thing because no matter where something important happens, there’s a good chance someone will be there to take a photo and share it with the world.
Out of billions of photos that are being taken each year, only a handful are remembered by a larger community. Those are the photos that impress us, that make us angry and hungry for change or even draw tears. Photography has never been more powerful nor has it ever been so free.
Here is a slideshow with 40 of the most powerful photographs you will ever see.