President Obama, Emmett Till, Oscar Selfie Among TIME’s Most Iconic Photos List
In the current over-saturated world of snaps, Instagram and Facebook photos, TIME has taken a step back by analyzing the important photos that have stood the test of time. Among those honored on the list published Friday (Nov. 18) included the open casket funeral of Emmitt Till, the Black Power Salute at the 1968 Olympics and President Barack Obama’s reaction upon watching the death of Osama bin Laden.
Overall, the photos represent what still linger in the world today: celebrity, war, racism and love. Early photos from photographers David Jackson, Gordon Parks and James Vanderzee depict African-American life from the 30’s to the 60’s which include lavish lifestyles during the Harlem Rennasiance, racism in Alabama that would go on to fuel the Civil Rights Movement and the death of Emmitt Till. “Let the people see what I’ve seen,” Till’s mother Mamie said to the funeral director at the time of the 14-year-old’s death in 1955. Published in Jet, the photo went on show just how troubling crimes against African-Americans went ignored.
There’s also photos that represent hope like the iconic “Burning Monk,” “Gandhi and the Spinning Wheel” and “Tank Man,” all depicting the demand for peace in the war-torn nations of India and China between the 1940’s through the 1980’s.
Not all photos are of grief and sorrow. Comical pics include the selfie to end all celebrity selfies from the 2014 Oscars, Malick Sidibé’s couple of a carefree black couple in Paris and a pillow fight between The Beatles. While many of the photos helped birth policies for domestic violence, Doctors Without Borders and missing children, they also bent the rules of traditional photojournalism.
Check out some of the iconic photos above and see the full list, along with 20 short documentaries here.