Intended for healthcare professionals

Reviews Art

The Body at Risk: Photography of Disorder, Illness, and Healing

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 12 January 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:125
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne, medical journalist (
  1. New York

    Among the risks to the bodies that we see in this photographic exhibition are ageing, child labour, poverty, pollution, domestic violence, war, and infectious diseases such as polio and HIV/AIDS. The striking photographs show sadness and misery, but also some hope. Just taking the photograph and getting it published has helped bring about change. Life is much better now for many people compared with what is recorded in these pictures.

    Almost all the photographs here, taken by 16 noted photographers, are black and white, and there are two videos. Most show American subjects.

    The exhibition begins with century-old photographs of child labourers, taken by Lewis Wickes Hine, who worked for the National Child Labor Committee. This group sought to put an end to children working in glass and textile …

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