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This photographer has dedicated his life to changing public opinion about sharks

david fleetham great white shark
Courtesy David Fleetham
Two great white sharks off Guadalupe Island, Mexico, by David Fleetham.

A familiar favorite made its way back to the big screen over the Labor Day weekend. Steven Spielberg's blockbuster "Jaws" has been re-released for folks who missed the original theater premiere 47 years ago. Five decades have not dampened the cinematic terror of the film’s big-baddy, a mega-large great white shark. But has the iconic film contributed to the great white’s bad rap?

Underwater photographer David Fleetham certainly thinks so. He’s traveled across the world taking photographs of great white sharks in the hopes that folks might see the ocean creatures in a new light. He spoke with the Conversation about his 30-year-long crusade.

Fleetham gave a talk on his life’s work Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. as part of Maui Nui Marine Resource Council’s Monthly Know You Ocean Speaker Series.

This interview aired on The Conversation on Sept. 7, 2022. The Conversation airs weekdays at 11 a.m. on HPR-1.

Savannah Harriman-Pote is a producer for The Conversation and Manu Minute. Contact her at
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