Falling Soldier

Capa’s photograph, Death of a Loyalist Soldier,was not staged. The way the body fell and the placement of both hands made the image real. If a person falls, human instincts to place your hand down to support your fall. This soldier’s hands were at his sides and plus he was holding his riffle. In Whelan’s discussion, a Captain told the fact that the fingers are somewhat curled toward the palm clearly indicates that the man’s muscles have gone limp and that he is already dead. It is nearly impossible for any conscious person to resist the reflex impulse to brace his fall by flexing his hand strongly backward at the wrist and extending his fingers out straight.

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