I've been thinking about this issue quite a bit recently. Next year I'll probably be going to Poland for a wedding. While there I'll have a chance to visit the Auschwitz-Birkenau site and the Lodz ghetto. Virtually my entire family died in those two places during WWII, with my four grandparents being among the only survivors of their families. So this is beyond a tourist visit or an homage for me. I've thought all along that there is almost no reason why I should take a picture of anything there. The aesthetic, artistic, and documentary reasons why I might take a picture are completely subservient to how important these places are to my family, and how I've witnessed their effects on the lives of my grandparents. I mean, it's really more of a family cemetary to me than it is a historic site. So I've thought of just leaving my camera behind. This has been hammered home even more firmly as I look at people posting photos on the web, in which every photo of Auschwitz-Birkenau just has to be grainy and B&W, just has to look like it came out of either some SS documentation, some journalist with the Red Army, or from some Steven Spielberg film. It's as if everyone on the WWII Eastern Front actually was black and white, just as everyone in the American Civil War was sepia-colored. So I'm struggling with the idea of how people (in general) can approach these places with a novel point of view. How do you take pictures in a way that's not horribly iconic, that creates something new or perhaps even hopeful? Moreover, if you were in my position, and going to a place that in the most horrible way has directly defined your family, and you've grown up with stories about it since childhood, then would this idea of mine of abandoning the camera seem reasonable? Obvious? Unreasonable?