This illustrated talk is a brief overview of the life and career of Robert Capa (1913-1954), a Hungarian Jew widely regarded since the mid-1930s as the world’s greatest war photographer.
It will focus on two specific debates about Capa’s integrity. Most famously, his photograph "Falling Soldier" of the Spanish Civil War has been challenged as staged, and then lied about, by Capa. More recently, the accepted account that most of Capa's incredible D-Day photographs were destroyed in a laboratory mishap has likewise been called a lie. As opposed to the trending views of Capa as dishonest, he was an unabashed, compulsive truth-teller. This is part of what made him seem so outrageous and outsized during his lifetime. He even spoke with great candor about the significance of his Jewishness.
Michael Berkowitz, from Rochester, New York, is Professor of Modern Jewish History at University College London and editor of Jewish Historical Studies: Transactions of the Jewish Historical Society of England. His current project is Washington's Secret Hollywood Connection and earlier books include Jews and Photography in Britain.
This is part of the JW3 partnership series with UCL and the Sir Martin Gilbert Learning Centre.