Roland Barthes
[Writer, critic, and theorist, b. 1915, Cherbourg, d. 1980, Paris.]

 In an initial period, photography, in order to surprise, photographs the notable; but soon, by a familiar reversal, it decrees notable whatever it photographs. 
 Ultimately—or at the limit—in order to see a photograph well, it is best to look away or close your eyes. 
 When we look at a photograph of ourselves or of others, we are really looking at the return of the dead. 
 Pornography ordinarily represents the sex-organ, it makes it into an immobile object (a fetish), to which we burn incense, like a god that doesn’t leave its niche. 
 Formerly, the image illustrated the text (made it clearer); today, the text loads the image, burdening it with a culture, a moral, an imagination. 
 How does meaning get into the image? Where does it end? And if it ends, what is there beyond? 
 I passed beyond the unreality of the thing represented, I entered crazily into the spectacle, into the image, taking into my arms what is dead, what is going to die... 
 A photograph is always invisible, it is not it that we see. 
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