Photographing people is where it all begins…photographically, historically, in family terms and as a record for those who come after us.
There are many academics who can talk forever on the subject, and tangle themselves (and us) in philosophy, verbosity and cant.
At base, really, it’s a co-operation between the subject and the maker of the photograph.
I’m not an academic, but I’ve photographed lots of people and it can be a fantastically pleasant experience.
I’ll leave it to the academics to explain further.