the cover of Folha de S. Paul

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By LORENZO Stained Glass*

Who followed the project's glorious 1980s Sheet feels like an orphan of a great progressive newspaper

A bit of good old semiotics and a large dose of common sense were enough to recognize the intentions, not at all veiled, of the photographic montage with the image of President Lula behind a window, on the front page of the Folha de S. Paul on January 19th, with the simulation of a shot that, from the angle, would go straight into his heart.

The professional who made it got her desired minutes of fame and success and congratulations are in order. Following the thesis defended that montages of this type are common and old, one can ask the photographer why, to obtain an even greater effect, a few drops of blood were not included on the president's chest or even on the windowpane, which it would remind us of John Lennon's bloodstained glasses on the cover of Yoko Ono's record when he was murdered. Who knows, maybe next time, the photographer will do a little more.

Another point is the editor's choice to take advantage of the cited montage. A Folha de S. Paul he can't contain himself any longer, the minimum necessary, and, if anyone still had doubts, now they are transparent what his interests are, probably, material, shareholder and such.

Corroborating our comments, the main story on the cover, in perfect layout symmetry with the already famous montage. Now, the title of the article is quite obscure and, as happens in these cases, it exhibits ambiguities, which comes along with the montage next to it. The headline says: “In Foco de Lula, military presence in Planalto is record”. The phrase “In the focus of Lula” can be understood in two ways.

Let's see a simpler example first: when you say “João's photo”, it may be that “João” took the photo, that is, “João” is the photographer, being interpreted as an agent; or it could be that “João” was photographed, in which case he is the patient/subject of the photo; we often need a broader context to resolve the ambiguity; if we say, for example, “Picasso's painting”, we know that “Picasso” is probably the author/agent of the painting; on the other hand, when the phrase is “the Harlequin painting”, we know that “harlequin” is the patient/subject of the painting.

“At Lula's focus” can receive the same two interpretations, that is, it could be that “Lula focuses on something”, that is, he is the agent; or Lula is focused on by someone and, in this case, it is the patient/subject of focus. Can the sequence of the headline then allow the reading of President Lula being in focus – in the crosshairs? – the military presence that is record in Planalto, that is, it is the patient/subject of an eventual verbalization of the noun “focus”.

It seems to us that this second interpretation is preferable, in a first reading, especially compared with the image that appears beside it. Since image is the substance of our individual and collective imagination, and the expression of our desires, the cover image strongly suggests, in our view, that it is possible to dream about the event simulated by the image.

Who followed the project's glorious 1980s Sheet feels like an orphan of a great progressive newspaper that, in fact, does investigative journalism and brings the great national and theoretical themes to rational journalistic discussion. This childishness of pretending to show the “other side” in an idealized neutrality should not convince even the newspaper professionals themselves.

abandoned to Folha de S. Paul, which will take a lot of effort and luck to grab the readers of the Estadão quality The Globe, we are going to need a great consistent journalistic project that will accompany the very difficult moments in which we find ourselves with the necessary depth. Let's hope that one or more of the independent sites that have been our hope in these times can (m) constitute the robust information vehicle we so badly need.

*Lorenzo stained glass He is a professor at the Faculty of Letters of the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG).

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