Elsewhere online
October 02, 2015

Starving Children Return to Aid Campaigns, Sparking Debate

NPR looks at the discussion among aid groups over "poverty porn" — images of malnourished African children that were once a staple of fundraising and that some critics say are making a comeback.

Common in 1980s campaigns, such pictures fell out of favor amid concerns that they reinforced stereotypes of Africans as passive victims in need of rescue. More recent examples, such as a 2013 Save the Children commercial showing emaciated children, have re-ignited the debate and renewed calls for campaigns featuring positive, dignified images of people in the developing world.

A Save the Children spokeswoman said the ad reflected "the reality of the situation" and was one of the charity's most successful in getting public support for its work alleviating food crises. The Overseas Development Institute, a think tank active on humanitarian issues, ran on online chat over the summer, using the hashtag #DevPix, on development photography in the digital age.