The Boston Photographs By Nora Ephron Analysis


In The Boston Photograph, Nora Ephron tells the story of how a photojournalist’s picture of a grieving widow became an iconic image of the JFK assassination. The photograph, taken by Stanley Pinkus, captured the moment when Jackie Kennedy learned that her husband had been shot. The photo ran on the front page of The New York Times and quickly became one of the most famous images of the 20th century.

Ephron traces the history of the photograph from its creation to its present-day status as an icon. She interviews Pinkus, who recalls taking the photo, and Jackie Kennedy’s sister, Lee Radziwill, who was with Jackie at the time. Ephron also discusses the impact of the photograph on the Kennedy family and on the nation.

The Boston Photograph is a moving tribute to an iconic image and the people who were impacted by it. Ephron’s story is both informative and touching, and her interviews provide new insight into the events of that fateful day.

In her essay “The Boston Photographs,” Nora Ephron highlights the power of photojournalism over the masses. Through telling the tale of how three inflammatory photographs were published, Ephron demonstrates that the publication of gruesome and sickening photos is absolutely required in order to properly convey a situation’s severity to the general public, where keeping ugly truths may provide some with a false sense of security or reality. Ephron uses vivid imagery, going from a setting to tell his story, and abundant evidence to support his case.

The Boston Photographs were taken by Stanley Forman, a photojournalist for the Boston Herald American. The first photograph, which was taken on April 5, 1976, depicts nine year old Kimberly Reynolds as she tries to escape from her apartment building which is engulfed in flames.

The second photograph is of nineteen year old Charlene Drews, who is also struggling to get away from the fire; she eventually jumped out of a window and died from her injuries two days later. The third and final photograph is of eighteen year old Paul Martell, who had already jumped from the window by the time Forman took the picture. He also died soon after from his injuries.

All three of these photographs were published in the Boston Herald American, and they caused quite a stir. Many people were outraged that such gruesome pictures would be published in a newspaper, especially since children were involved. Others felt that the pictures were necessary in order to show the reality of the situation, and that hiding the truth would only do more harm than good.

Ephron does an excellent job of drawing her readers in by giving a detailed description of the events leading up to the taking of each photograph. She then goes on to explain how publishing these photographs affected both Forman and the public. Ephron’s use of pathos is evident when she describes Forman’s reaction to the negative feedback he received after the photographs were published. The reader can feel his frustration and helplessness as he tries to defend his decision to publish the pictures.

Ephron’s article is successful in convincing the reader that photojournalism, no matter how graphic, is important in order to give the public an accurate portrayal of events. She uses strong evidence and emotional appeal to make her case, and she ultimately succeeds in changing the opinion of those who may have been skeptical of Forman’s actions.

Ephron’s use of pathos in “The Boston Photographs” through powerful imagery draws the audience into a better knowledge about the fatal fire’s devastation. The phrase “smoke pouring from the building” is used to describe both the enormity of the fire and its uniqueness (152).

The response from the bystanders was one of horror and “the crowd roared” (152) as they watched in terror. The photographer captures a mother and child leaping from the burning building, which Ephron describes as an image that is “seared into our national consciousness” (153). The photograph was taken by Stanley Forman, a photojournalist for the Boston Herald American, who won a Pulitzer Prize for his work.

The Boston Photograph caused great controversy because many people believed that Forman should have intervened to save the lives of the mother and child. However, Ephron argues that Forman did the right thing by taking the photograph because it helped to raise awareness about the dangerous conditions of inner-city housing. The photograph also played a role in the passage of new housing legislation that helped to improve the living conditions for many people.

Ephron describes a mother and her young daughter falling to their deaths in tandem, and even uses the photographs in her essay to tug at the readers’ emotions, urging them to open their eyes and see this terrible reality for themselves. Ephron continued by employing considerable detail and proof to support her claims, establishing her as a very trustworthy source, which strengthened her case.

The way Ephron described the situation and used the pictures as well made this article an extremely powerful read. Ephron’s photojournalism in The Boston Photograph is moving, inspiring, and heart-wrenching all at the same time. The story she tells is one that needs to be heard, and her delivery of it is perfect. She uses the photos to draw the reader in and then keeps them hooked with her writing. This is an excellent example of how photojournalism can be used to tell a story and raise awareness about important issues.

Ephron spent the majority of the essay establishing other people’s viewpoints before expressing her own, allowing the reader to comprehend various points of view before immediately agreeing with the author’s viewpoint. She cited a number of sources and demonstrated her profound understanding and knowledge of what goes on behind the scenes at The Washington Post, further enhancing her overall credibility and motivation for writing this essay.

The article was successful in delivering a clear and concise message while also providing the reader with enough information to form their own opinion on the matter.

Photojournalism is an important tool in news reporting, but it can also be controversial. The Boston Photograph by Nora Ephron tells the story of one such photograph and the different reactions to it. The photo in question showed a group of firefighters carrying a woman from a burning building. The woman, who was later identified as Roseann Quinn, died in the fire.

The photo was taken by Stanley J. Forman of The Boston Herald American and won the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography. However, not everyone was happy with the photo. Some people felt that it was exploitative and that Forman should not have taken the photo. Others felt that the photo was an important document of the event and that it showed the heroism of the firefighters.

Ephron takes a middle ground in her article, acknowledging both sides of the argument. She ultimately comes down on the side of Forman, arguing that he did nothing wrong in taking the photo. She points out that photojournalists are often put in difficult situations and have to make split-second decisions about what to do. In this case, Forman made the decision to take the photo and it resulted in an award-winning photograph.


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