Human Rights Photography
SocialDocumentary.net believes that photography can make a difference in the world and can directly support the goals of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We have developed a definition for Human Rights Photography and believe that work that aspires to these guidelines will come closest to achieving these goals.
Human Rights Photography creates a culture where the abuse of human beings becomes more difficult by strengthening the recognition of the spirit, soul, and dignity of each and every human being on this planet. To achieve this, the work must:
- Be a body of work on a specific issue, not individual images.
- Have context – words are necessary. The goal of the work is always to help us understand both the subject, and their situation.
- Unlike journalism, there is a point of view. The exhibit is not necessarily objective.
- Demonstrate infinite respect for the subject, even if you disagree with the subject. You cannot tell an honest story if you approach a subject with disdain and superiority.
- The work is fundamentally about the subject, not the photographer.
- Photographers must be willing to invest time and themselves in the issue.
- And finally, photographers must be driven to tell the story, show the work, be an advocate or inspire others to be an advocate.