Selfie’s… Narcissistic or pure documentation


Image Source: Simpsons Facebook

The word “selfie” can now be found in the Dictionary, thus, becoming formally part of our languages history. Selfie’s are now seen as an art form as Saltz (2014) states, “fast portrait with a phone and immediately distributed on a network.”( Saltz 2014). He classes the selfie as a portrait thus indicating an art form, Saltz (2014) later elaborates to indicate that selfies are a type of Folk Art. Though it does not matter that a selfie is classed as “art”, many abuse the selfie and take these images in mirrors or include what is known as the duck face which I would not indicate as art.

Selfie is a rather juvenile name and also seems to degrade the art form. Selfies became a dominate art form for teenagers whom were predominately posting these on social networking sites. However, this has become part of our society either through mocking portrayals, being included in the dictionary as mentioned above or as folk art. However, as Saltz (2014)


Image Source: Ellen Facebook

also mentions, this art form needs a more intellectual name that has fewer connotations. When I see the word selfie I connotate it with an image of ones self, usually positioned to resemble a duck, edited and shared instantly on social media. It is obvious why Saltz (2014) states that many claim selfies to be part of our narcissistic culture, evidence towards this claim is perhaps our use of apps such as Snapchat and Instagram, yes these are photo sharing sites but they also are the perfect platform to post unlimited attempts at selfies on to the network.

Though I personally do not believe that the selfie is part of our narcissistic culture, I  more believe selfies are a visual way to document ourselves perhaps on a daily basis (for example the daily photo’s for a year videos). Great example to back up my statement is Ellen’s Oscar’s selfie which clearly was not narcissism but rather documenting her time at the Oscar’s and to provide entertainment.

It is clear selfies are going to be seen as a large part of the twenty first’s centuries culture. It is hoped, however, they are seen as art rather than a self-obsessed juvenile image.


Saltz, J 2014, “Art at Arm’s Length: A History of the Selfie.” Vulture,  17th March 2014, < mid=twitter_nymag&utm_content=buffer18f61&utm_medium=scoial&>


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