User talk:Billy

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Interesting stuff on Lansdale. can you remove the jokey captions and the Mongoose and probably the pentagon (unless it has some clear purpose that I am missing - in which case state what it is). Can you also try and make sure you reference each quotation as some of them seem to have no source eg some which must come from the NY Times obit need referenced as does the stated dispute on whether he was the model for two characters in novels. Thanks --David 21:41, 18 September 2008 (BST)

Try creating new pages using: --David 11:35, 22 August 2008 (BST)

John Berger replies...

The nature of imagery and the response of the viewer isn't cryptic as such, in my opinion. Nor do they lend themselves to a precise definition. How do I know what you see when you look at an image? I would say they were illustrations in a very broad sense. Their purpose is to stimulate the readers imagination which extends ('detournment') their specific cultural context: in a sense they are out of context in another recontextualised. As to what they are specifically, 'decrypted' as it were: I don't know, all i can say is that they 'felt' appropriate, they represent a sensibility, a mood — there is no specific message which is encoded.

But what are they? Is there a simple explanation: one that would satisfy people who have no imagination, no interest in visual images as such, people who just what to be told what's what and who want gold to be turned back into base metal. Possibly, but is there a simple one liner, a punchline, a soundbite, something quick so that we can all get on with our lives. Yes there is, but there is a penalty here — the reader will never really know if what they are being told is just made up on the spot: simply fabricated.

The first image is very simple: what do you see. You see a man in a big wig. the term 'big wig' having a cultural meaning which can be related to the board of directors at Diligence: they are 'big wigs.' The image has a man whose wig is so big the other man needs a big long stick to put his hat on — 'surely he is the biggest wig of all' could be the caption. Historically the image evokes the US and UK's past: the long tradition of commerce and affiliation of which Diligence is a contemporary manifestation, therefore the image is used as an epigram or a logo for the company, much the way they use such imagery on their own website.

The second image is from the TV program referred to in the text — it posits a casual direction.

The third image is taken from a Tory party website on juvenile crime but is put alongside references to the war in Iraq to become at first a slightly abstract pattern, a slightly ambiguous texture almost, perhaps representing a bullet hole in glass. This carries with it connotations of perhaps a car assassination, penetration, shattering something dangerous to touch, an emblem of violence, yet an odd spiders web.

The next image is a graphically explicit photograph of the feet of victims of the Iraq war which is the source of Diligence's money. It is a reminder of the cost of war in human terms and is placed alongside the advisory board to remind them and any other reader of that cost and effect.

The last image is a still from Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove. The actor is Sterling Hayden who regretted his role in the McCarthy witchunts of the 50s and 60s enough to play Brig. Gen. Jack D. Ripper (all the characters in the film have quite funny names). Brig. Gen Ripper has become synonymous with the mental effects of the cold war and its relation to the 'war monger' and its relation to the extension of US power over the globe. It is used here to sum up, perhaps posing the question 'are these people any different or any less trustworthy?'

Just take them out if they bother you.

struggling with new ref system

the board members come from City Limits article as far as i know.