In the Swiss Minaret, a Muslim lady dressed in a long dark concealing garment stands facing the reader. Her face is covered, leaving only her grimacing looks emerging from within the covered expression. It also contains a red Swiss flag in the background with missile-shaped dark objects sprouting from the red Swiss flag. A bold statement in Islam, slapped across the foreground of the picture on the right side to the woman, suggests that the poster is about a religious upheaval. The woman seems to stand closer to the observer than the flag and the missile-shaped structures which lie behind. The white color in the background sharply contrasts the dark structures placed on the red flag. As a result, Islam is ideally introduced as the topic of contention as is illustrated by the black Islamic clothing against a white background and the bold phrase typed in the poster’s foreground.
Visual Text Analysis
The author uses lighting on the visual text properly. The objects included are reminiscent of tall, slim towers that are usually located in mosques. The wordings used in the visual text translate to “Stop. Yes on the Minaret Prohibition.” This sends a clear message which we can identify as the contentious issue being portrayed in picture.
The author’s use of black for the woman’s dressing is partially due to the fact that most “Burqas” are black in color. The other reason that could have led the author to use black is to signify the harsh reality about the presence of an Islamic culture in society. We know from previous reports in the local and global news of “Jihads,” which are holy wars launched by Muslim extremists on Christian nations (Bukh%u0101r%u012B).
The graphic expression is created from an angle that gives us the notion of the author facing the woman at the same height and level as her eye-level. This does not implying any pressure on the woman depicted (Donnelly). The Swiss flag however is placed at a lower level and it is covered by minarets shaped like missiles. There are seven minarets depicting the Islamic towers that are intended for construction around the country. The birds-eye-view point from which the author views the flag indicates that there is pressure on the country as a whole. The woman is also seen to stand in front of the flag implying she bears more significance in this portrait than the minarets. The woman’s facial expression implies she is furious. There is some text as well in front of the flag implying that there should be a ban on Islamic influence within the country. These are allegations strong enough to suggest that Islamic religion is not accepted in the nation.
The use of minarets that are shaped like Missiles draws on the author’s intention to cripple the campaign for strengthening Islamic practice. Looking at the Muslim population within Switzerland, we can estimate the figures to be around four percent of the entire country’s population ( Swiss Federal Statistical Office). The People’s Party was rallying to get Muslim influence banned from the country despite being a minority. Two years prior to this event, the People’s Party had published a similar post displaying white sheep on a Swiss flag kicking out a Black sheep from the flag. This could be translated to reflect the political upheaval at that time where the Swiss were rallying to deport foreign criminals back to their homelands including their minors and their respective families. The same judgment can be applied to this significantly similar diagram. Its usage in the time span preceding the vote to the ban was critical since it altered the viewers’ opinions leading to a win in the ban to Islamic influence. Most of the votes cast supported the ban despite claims that only half the population participated in the voting process.
Switzerland has a total of four minarets distributed around the country, yet in the photomontage, seven Minarets are erected on a Swiss flag. The Minarets are black in color, just like the “burqa,” and are shaped like missiles to depict the grim implications of a possible threat to the country’s democracy. The use of dark colors depicts a grim reality in visual texts (Donnelly). Therefore, we draw a conclusion from the author’s use of black that he intended to illustrate the bleak influence if the Islamic culture over western countries as well as Switzerland. The depiction passes the message that Islamic religion is attempting to rise and take root in Switzerland, which is a Christian-dominated country.
In this photomontage, the author intended to juxtapose the images that seem to take precedence in the picture. For instance, we can clearly make out the Swiss flag from the background despite being placed behind dark objects. This depiction is an influential statement meant to dissuade people from allowing Islamic influence within Switzerland. The author emphasized on color and as such we can conclude that the photomontage was purely inferential and not formal. The Swiss Minaret was a subtext of the current issue still facing the nation as well as many other nations worldwide. It was an effective medium for influencing a vote, and its use and publication sent a clear message to the public making them believe Islam would come to destroy their nation as a whole.