50 Influential Photographs That Changed Our World

Given the sensitivity of its subjects and its galvanizing potential, documentary photography naturally lends itself to debate. On the one hand, a single image of a sick child or the impacts of a devastating storm can incite public reaction and change on a scale that many activists spend their lives hoping to achieve.

On the other hand, people take these photos — and their motivations and choices in doing so may manipulate the “reality” of the captured scenes and thus their truth. Regardless of where you stand on the subject, these famous photos bear out the notion that photography yields far more than just elements of lightness and darkness on paper:

Influential Photographs Albania Baby
Auschwitz Nail Scratches
Berlin Wall Being Torn Down
Family Hug After Tornado Influential Photographs
50 Influential Photographs That Changed Our World
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For more powerful famous photos, be sure to visit our posts on life inside North Korea and the best photographs on All That Is Interesting.

Savannah Cox
Savannah Cox is the Managing Editor of All That Is Interesting. She holds a Master's Degree in International Relations, and works as a reporter/producer for DNAinfo.
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