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OAS/GNT Sustainable Heritage Endorsement Programme

PHOTOVOICE PROMPT #3: The Things Tourists Never See

What do you see here? (Addressed to the whole group)

Diseased banana

Green banana

Blue plastic

Protected banana

Wild weeds with yellow flowers

Half-dead leaf

Wasted food

Why did you take this photo? (Addressed to the photographer)

In general, stories have two or more sides. This is no exception to our banana story here in Grenada. Most of the times when tourists see our banana, it is usually in its ‘perfect’ state (smooth, well-toned, healthy, and sexy). But banana suffer from diseases too in the same way that culture endures social and economic dis-eases. This photo shares the undocumented/untold side of the story—that everything is not as pretty as it is in the forefront.

What is really happening here? (Addressed to the whole group—alternatively what does the photograph represent?)

In terms of diseases and pests, the photo of the diseased bananas is symbolic of Grenada’s dis-eased culture in spite of its longstanding sex appeal, a culture that is also struggling economically and socially to stay afloat. Even so, the photo implies that Grenada should not be afraid to display its vulnerabilities: frustrations and weaknesses or its unfulfilled harvests: work done and labor lost, which suggests that Grenada’s culture is not only built on perseverance and tolerance, but also on balance and truth. Other representations of diseased bananas are missed opportunities for growth and premature relationships or situations. Additionally, the banana spoilage signifies “sufferation” in regards to local, regional, and international food and job securities despite the efforts to shield the crop from decay. Bananas’ various value-added roles include the creations of banana chips, banana flour, and animal feed, among other uses. Symbolically, the blue plastic wrap around the afflicted bananas evokes hope and support.

PHOTO Title: Undocumented Victim

Photograph Location: Clozier, St. John’s

Photographer: Horace George

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