Ethel Kennedy, Los Angeles
© Harry Benson

Reference URL

Ethel Kennedy, Los Angeles 1968 (printed 2007)
  • Scottish Art
This dramatic photograph of Ethel Kennedy stirred controversy and debate over the ethics of photojournalism following its publication hours after the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedy in Los Angeles, 1968. Led to where her husband lay Mrs Kennedy bent down by his side and whispered “I’m with you my baby”. She then stood, turned to the crown and shouted “give him air”. Benson has captured this moment of raw emotion and trauma perfectly. Her outreached hand is blurred and slightly obscures her face, yet her eyes engage the viewer and reveal her anguish. Just after securing this shot, Benson was knocked to the floor by a Kennedy aide. Instinctively he changed films and hid the valuable spool, which featured many of his iconic pictures of the scene, down his sock.

Glossary Open


A journalist who chiefly uses photography to report on people, places and events.



  • Acc. No. PGP 374.4
  • Medium Silver gelatine print
  • Size 32.70 x 26.30 cm
  • Credit Purchased from the photographer 2007