Alexander Nehamas

Alexander Nehamas, a professor of philosophy and comparative literature at Princeton University, is the author of The Art of Living, Nietzsche: Life as Literature and Virtues of Authenticity.

Recent Articles

The Other Eye of the Beholder

Regarding the Pain of Others By Susan Sontag, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 139 pages, $20.00 "Ever since cameras were invented in 1839, photography has kept company with death": Thirty years after the first of the essays eventually collected in On Photography , which was published in 1977, Susan Sontag is still troubled by the aesthetic, moral and political ambiguities of the medium. Regarding the Pain of Others is her erudite, subtle and provocative -- though also tentative and sometimes inconclusive -- meditation on the tensions inherent in photographs of war, death and devastation. Such pictures seem to multiply with every passing day. Does that make their horrors more palpable or less? Many are technically proficient; some are even beautiful. Does beauty celebrate violence and ferocity or does it simply entice a larger audience to confront them? They seem to establish a bond between viewer and victim. Does compassion incite us to fight injustice or does it permit us to feel innocent...