To the Best of Our Knowledge

Saturdays 2pm-3pm

Each week To the Best of Our Knowledge delivers in-depth interviews with nationally and internationally-known guests whose passion for new ideas will challenge and engage. Hosted by Jim Fleming, this interview magazine is thoughtful and penetrating, and features fascinating topics and guests.

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Is the Risk of Photojournalism Worth It?

Jun 11, 2016

This week all of us – public radio listeners and producers -- were shocked and saddened by the death of NPR photojournalist David Gilkey.  He and his translator, Zabihullah "Zabi" Tamann, were killed while they were on assignment in Afghanistan, when the convoy they were traveling in was ambushed by Taliban.    Photojournalists like David go places most of us wouldn’t want to go, they take pictures of things we may not want to see… They risk their lives, hoping to send back that one image that just might change someone’s mind or open someone’s heart. 

Great war photographers bring a tremendous sense of mission to their work.  Most of them believe the right image seen by enough people at the right time can change the world.  Maybe not right away – but in time.  Over the past 30 years, the photographer James Nachtwey has covered just about every major armed conflict in the world.  He's been shot and wounded more than once, and nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize ten times.  We talked with him when he had just put together an exhibition of photos he took in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the place those wars began - Ground Zero on 9/11.

The Aesthetic Beauty of War Photography

Jun 11, 2016

There are moral and ethical issues that come up around war photography. Writer David Shields charged the New York Times with glamorizing war in photographs.  Shields analyzed 100’s of pictures published on the front page of the Times and last year he wrote a book accusing the paper of making war beautiful.  Charles Monroe-Kane sat down to talk with him.

 

Taking pictures of war is complicated. The late philosopher Susan Sontag thought a lot about the moral implications of taking and looking at photos of human conflict. She wrote a classic book on the subject, called “Regarding the Pain of Others.”  We're revisiting our interview with her, about how to see and think about photography.

Photography Beyond Tragedy

Jun 11, 2016

The stereotype of photojournalists is that they’re adrenaline junkies.  Risk takers.  But they're often surprisingly humble about their work -- maybe because their job is to erase themselves, to become the lens that lets us see the world.  Here photojournalist Brendan Bannon talks about finding beauty in the midst of suffering and about a photo he took at the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. 

Capturing Manufactured Landscapes

Jun 11, 2016

Anyone who works in news will tell you that photographs drive attention.  That a great photograph can propel a story or an issue from the sidelines to the center of a public conversation.  Large-scale photographer Edward Burtynsky is making it his life’s work to jump start a global conversation about sustainability – by photographing scarred, damaged industrial landscapes.  He’s a TED prize winner whose work is in more than 50 museum collections.  Burtynsky and filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal have worked together on two documentaries.  Steve Paulson talked with her about their first – filmed in

Great war photographers bring a tremendous sense of mission to their work.  Most of them believe the right image seen by enough people at the right time can change the world.  Maybe not right away – but in time.  Over the past 30 years, the photographer James Nachtwey has covered just about every major armed conflict in the world.  He's been shot and wounded more than once, and nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize ten times.  We talked with him when he had just put together an exhibition of photos he took in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the place those wars began - Ground Zero on 9/11.

Taking pictures of war is complicated. The late philosopher Susan Sontag thought a lot about the moral implications of taking and looking at photos of human conflict. She wrote a classic book on the subject, called “Regarding the Pain of Others.”  We're revisiting our interview with her, about how to see and think about photography.

Capturing Manufactured Landscapes

Jun 11, 2016

Anyone who works in news will tell you that photographs drive attention.  That a great photograph can propel a story or an issue from the sidelines to the center of a public conversation.  Large-scale photographer Edward Burtynsky is making it his life’s work to jump start a global conversation about sustainability – by photographing scarred, damaged industrial landscapes.  He’s a TED prize winner whose work is in more than 50 museum collections.  Burtynsky and filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal have worked together on two documentaries.  Steve Paulson talked with her about their first – filmed in

Is the Risk of Photojournalism Worth It?

Jun 11, 2016

This week all of us – public radio listeners and producers -- were shocked and saddened by the death of NPR photojournalist David Gilkey.  He and his translator, Zabihullah "Zabi" Tamann, were killed while they were on assignment in Afghanistan, when the convoy they were traveling in was ambushed by Taliban.    Photojournalists like David go places most of us wouldn’t want to go, they take pictures of things we may not want to see… They risk their lives, hoping to send back that one image that just might change someone’s mind or open someone’s heart. 

Photography Beyond Tragedy

Jun 11, 2016

The stereotype of photojournalists is that they’re adrenaline junkies.  Risk takers.  But they're often surprisingly humble about their work -- maybe because their job is to erase themselves, to become the lens that lets us see the world.  Here photojournalist Brendan Bannon talks about finding beauty in the midst of suffering and about a photo he took at the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. 

The Aesthetic Beauty of War Photography

Jun 11, 2016

There are moral and ethical issues that come up around war photography. Writer David Shields charged the New York Times with glamorizing war in photographs.  Shields analyzed 100’s of pictures published on the front page of the Times and last year he wrote a book accusing the paper of making war beautiful.  Charles Monroe-Kane sat down to talk with him.