Saturday, August 30, 2008


So, are you wrapped up in the Convention sandwich? The Democrats last week and the Republicans this week? Casually? Fervently? Are you addicted to the talking heads, like I may not or may be, or do you watch with the sound turned down? I certainly hope it's not the latter, because that might defeat the purpose of watching a speech.

The image above was done last year for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. The article for which it accompanied spoke about terrorism and the many ways it affects a country and its people, far deeper than just on a national defense level. The author discusses how an attack can trigger a psychological response which can fundamentally change how a nation's people perceive their own security. A person's country and its place in the world plays a large part in defining who a person thinks they are. How can an attack take away from this perception? Does it have to be just a physical attack? Would a psychological attack produce similar results? A terrorist attack also affects how other nations look at the attacked country. It's a total re-framing of the country's values and its sense of identity in the world.

I interpreted that metaphor, visually, with the U.S. flag pictured in a slightly askew frame -- a frame that was symbolically thrown off-center by the literal and emotional effects of an attack.

What is terrorism, anyway? How has your definition of terrorism affected you? Can protection be a form of terrorism? "Perhaps," said the thinking person. But, one thing is for certain, 2008 is a prime time for illustrators who relish interpreting these answers through their own eyes.

Preliminary Sketch

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