Tragedy’s Thousand Words

The past couple of days have produced prose, describing scenes from Haiti, that has been nauseating and heartbreaking in equal measure. (See, for example, the lede of yesterday’s Times story: “Dawn brought horrible scenes to light in Haiti‚Äôs capital on Wednesday: piles of disintegrated concrete, with limbs sticking out and muffled cries emanating from deep inside; wounded people staggering through the streets; and countless bodies littering the landscape.”)

Still, though, for a tragedy of this magnitude, it is images that emerge as the most compelling conduits of loss. Such as the one currently leading NPR’s homepage, which brings emerging casualty estimates—unthinkable numbers—into horrific, human relief:

Has America ever needed a media watchdog more than now? Help us by joining CJR today.

Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.