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1. On Photography
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2. Yousuf Karsh: Heroes of Light
3. Criticizing Photographs: An Introduction
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4. The Reconfigured Eye: Visual Truth
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5. The New History of Photography
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6. The Photograph as Contemporary
7. Golden Age of British Photography
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8. Seizing the Light: A History of
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9. Photography : A Cultural History
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10. Photography : A Critical Introduction
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11. Contest of Meaning: Critical Histories
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12. Pandemic:Facing AIDS
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13. A Dog's Life : A Book of Classic
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14. Magnum Stories
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15. At the Edge of the Light: Thoughts
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16. The Mind's Eye: Writings on Photography
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17. Bystander : A History of Street
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18. Photography's Antiquarian Avant-Garde:
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19. London Then and Now
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20. Chautauqua

1. On Photography
by Susan Sontag
list price: $13.00
our price: $9.75
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Asin: 0312420099
Catlog: Book (2001-08-25)
Publisher: Picador
Sales Rank: 8834
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Winner of the National Book Critics' Circle Award for Criticism.

One of the most highly regarded books of its kind, On Photography first appeared in 1977 and is described by its author as “a progress of essays about the meaning and career of photographs.” It begins with the famous “In Plato’s Cave”essay, then offers five other prose meditations on this topic, and concludes with a fascinating and far-reaching “Brief Anthology of Quotations.”
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Reviews (15)

4-0 out of 5 stars A classic, though somewhat dated, collection of essays
I am not a big fan of artistic criticism: I often find it pretentious and prolix. Sontag's essays can be described by these adjectives, at least on first reading. I suspected that critics are inherently like this (until I read Nancy Newhall), but I reread "On Photography" recently and have changed my opinion slightly: critics can be pretentious, but that is the nature of the task.

Sontag's essays are complex and thought provoking, eliciting a flow of ideas that one needs to think about deeply: what is a photograph and how does it convey its message? How much truth does a photograph contain, if any? The answer to that last question is much more difficult with the advent of digital photography and the wonderous (or evil, depending on your viewpoint) manipulations that can be done in the digital darkroom.

An issue that isn't discussed in great depth is the relationship between candid snapshots on one end of the spectrum, and fine art photography on the other; Photography as a medium for artistic expression vs. a medium for recording reality (or unreality or surreality).

The book is not trivially understood: references to philosophy and art history abound, and a dictionary of philosophy and art is almost a requisite. You should also expect to read this a couple of times to get the full impact: do not make your judgement based on a first reading.

5-0 out of 5 stars An interesting look into the societal meaning of photography
Photography, probably more than any other medium, is emblematic of the nature of modern Western society. Photographs are concerned chiefly with appearances, they are deceptively nuanced but essentially narrow, yet somehow they find great breadth in their mechanization and ubiquity. And, like our society, they tend towards an ultimate reduction of the dimensionality of time. Through photographs the past blends into the present, flattening into an omni-present "now" in which history loses its philosophical weight as it increases in familiarity. In a sense photographs are the ultimate invention of a humanist-capitalist society: they provide the commodification of memory itself! And like the society which originated them, they provide equal portions of help and harm, of truth and of fiction; they have undeniable value, but they also result in a certain loss of innocence, and of deeper values.

The six essays in this book (all of which were originally published in the New York Times Review of Books) provide a critical evaluation of these themes. Ms. Sontag is concerned with what she sees as the cheapening of experience that the proliferation of photographs in our society has caused. She argues that photography has enshrined a superficiality of experience and contributed to the overvaluation of appearances to a point where image has (subconsciously) replaced reality as reality. In many ways this shift in our modes of cultural perception is shattering; it is also completely inevitable and irreversible. As an example: who after seeing Ansel Adams's stunning photographs of Yosemite could help feeling slightly underwhelmed when experiencing the real thing? Certainly, Yosemite in person retains a certain cachet simply for its "bigness", but the mystique, the mysticism of the Adams photo is going to be missing from most people's experience of the real place. The image genie is out of the bottle... and Sontag is here to tell us that we have to live with the consequences of its release. On Photography is a lengthy exploration of the implications of the genie's (photography's) work on society. The book is full of insights into the meaning of an image-saturated society, but you won't find many conclusions at the end. It is, as a good work of criticism should be, a collection of numerous deep and provocative statements with few prescriptions. Sontag leaves it up to you, the reader, to sort out the pieces for yourself.

In fact, one of the things I found most interesting about the essays was that although Ms. Sontag evaluates many of these societal trends she doesn't seem to have a strictly negative response to any of them. Her attitude seems to be that if, for instance, the easy availability of images of Half Dome makes us enjoy Half Dome itself somewhat less, that rather than stopping looking at pictures of Half Dome or photographing Half Dome we should instead re-evaluate what experiencing Half Dome really means to us. Since we've invented a new society, and new ways of looking at society and nature, it's requisite upon us that we also invent new ways of understanding our experience of life and society. I actually agree with her on this: it's okay to wax nostalgic about the idyllicism of life before the advent of the image-saturation that we have today, but there's no way to go back to that idyllic society. Our time would be better spent in learning to deal with (and shape) our present society than in trying to shift back to an older, now completely lost, ideal of society.

Sontag wants photographers to reach a deeper understanding of the implications of their work. She's not asking the photographer-reader to put down his camera and take up a brush or pen instead, but she is saying that without some grasp of the meaning of photography to society photographers are not very helpful or socially desirable creatures. One of the points that she makes, touching on this, is that our traditional understanding of photography in relation to the other arts is flawed. Photography itself isn't actually an art-form, like painting or music. Or in her words, "Like language, it is a medium in which works of art (among other things) are made. Out of language, one can make scientific discourse, bureaucratic memoranda, love letters, grocery lists, and Balzac's Paris. Out of photography, one can make passport pictures, weather photographs, pornographic pictures, X-rays, wedding pictures, and Atget's Paris." Artistic photography without theme, photography without intent, is about as valuable as fiction without characters or plot. Photographers persist in photographing meaningless objects and minutiae, simply because this is what the "great" photographers have done, instead of trying to draft their own statements and follow their own visions. (Curiously, Edward Weston's photographs of his toilet are actually art; however, my pictures of my toilet would not be art, because I cannot photograph my toilet with any understanding of the meaning of these photographs, and so cannot have any pretensions towards the artistic value of these photographs.)

I believe that anyone who photographs should read this book, whether they merely take casual photos while on vacation or are pursuing photography as their career. We all need to reach an understanding of the act of picture-taking, because only with some sort of understanding can we give our work a sense of direction. And only with direction can photography become more than cultural noise, desensitizing us through over-exposure to cliches and making banalities out of the profound.

1-0 out of 5 stars Pompous, elitist crap
What a load of garbage. Equating a camera with a gun and the act of photography with a violent crime, is so ridiculous it does not even deserve to be discussed. She has no idea waht she is talking about.

5-0 out of 5 stars Still pertinent and thoughtful
Ms. Sontag's collection of texts (which I believe were originally published as separate newspaper articles) still offer food for thought despite their age. Her thoughts on history, current events, and the modified perception of both through the medium of photography continue to be pertinent. This is an interesting read for those unaquainted with theoretical texts, and an important reference for those with more experience.

1-0 out of 5 stars AN PARODY OF FEMINISM
To be photographed is not the equivalent of being raped. Ask any rape victim. This book is insulting and moronic. ... Read more

2. Yousuf Karsh: Heroes of Light and Shadow
by Yousuf Karsh, Dieter Vorsteher, Janet Yates, Deutsches Historisches Museum
list price: $75.00
our price: $75.00
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Asin: 0773733108
Catlog: Book (2001-07-01)
Publisher: Stoddart
Sales Rank: 335307
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3. Criticizing Photographs: An Introduction to Understanding Images
by TerryBarrett
list price: $30.62
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Asin: 0767411862
Catlog: Book (1999-07-09)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages
Sales Rank: 44388
Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"Criticizing Photographs: An Introduction to Understanding Images is now in its third edition and it has become the standard in photo criticism and theory courses throughout the United States. The book contains an elegant pedagogical apparatus founded on the four critical activities that Terry Barrett so ably illuminates -- describing, interpreting, evaluating, and theorizing.

Moreover, Barrett's analytical categorization of photographs into ideal types including the aesthetically evaluative and the interpretive (to cite two examples) has provided readers with a highly original and useful way to think about how photographs are made to function in the world." Louis Kaplan, Southern Illinois University
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Reviews (8)

2-0 out of 5 stars Criticisng Criticism
A look at the subtitle to this book, "An Introduction to Understanding Images", might lead one to believe that it is about photographs and what makes them good or bad (or if there are such things as "good" and "bad" photographs). But instead it is about photographic criticism, primarily written. And even then it really doesn't tell you very much about how to write criticism yourself, or how to interpret what you read, or how to develop patterns of thought that would enable you to criticize in a useful fashion. Instead most of the book is concerned with the pigeon holes into which different kinds of photographic criticism can be put.

An unstated thesis of this book seems to be that the criticism of photographs is an art form itself. Certainly anyone who has read something like Walter Benjamin's "the Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" might agree. But if it is an art, then it has both form and content, and any book claiming to teach one about the art (I almost said craft) had better address those points. To know that there are theoretical schools like Postmodernism or Feminist Theory is useful to those trying to organize photographic criticism and may be helpful to the photographic critic who is trying to decide what his own approach is, but knowing that these schools exist does not help a critic as much as a knowledge of how to look at a picture and organize a written commentary.

Fortunately, the book has a number of examples of written criticism, including several examples of different critics addressing the same picture. Unfortunately most of the criticism addresses the content of the photograph without considering how the form relates to the content or how, as Mark Schorer has said, technique leads to discovery. For example, Ansel Adams' photographs rely upon the range of light from the whitest whites to the blackest blacks to make their statements about the grandeur of the American wilderness. Unfortunately, nothing in this book considers photographic technique for the critic, although there are plenty of opportunities. For example, there is an ambiguous picture by Robert Doisneau taken in a Paris Café showing a younger women and an older man. The picture is grainy and the depth of field shows the women more sharply then the man. Both of these techniques should contribute to the possible interpretation of this photograph, and yet they are not mentioned.

I think the photo critic who wants to improve his art would be far better served by learning something about photography, and then reading actual criticism, like John Szarkowski's "Looking at Photographs". "Criticizing Photographs" should only be considered as a supplement to such studies.

5-0 out of 5 stars useful and excellent book for students of photography
I have read Persian (Farsi) translation of the 2nd. edition of this book. Thanks to Mr. Barrett and the translators of the book. It helped me to understand how to criticize photographs and I found it a unique book in this field. After searching in Internet I found out that Mr. Barrett Has revised the book in ashort periodof time. I suggest, as a student of photography in university, to all studentd in the world to read the book. Again thanks to Mr. Barrett.

5-0 out of 5 stars "It takes more time to make a picture than to appreciate it"
This is an excellent book.

These are some questions the book deals about: How a photograph is made? What are its purposes? How should its context be considered? Was that photograph made or taken?

In this book several criteria (even opposite ones) about photographs are also analyzed and compared, leaving to the reader the decision about the one(s) to take. The process of understanding a photograph is not simple, but this book is a nice guide to follow.

At the end of the book, examples of reviews are included, as a reference not only for students, but also for the person who simply would want to talk about a photograph. Moreover, advice concerning the redaction is also given.

5-0 out of 5 stars A treasure trove of definitions, examples, and ideas...
A diversity of critical voices and photographic approaches is explored, giving the reader access to a rich world of creative thoughtŠBarrett defines criticism as "informed discourse about art to increase understanding and appreciation of art." He organizes his treatment of the four major activities of criticism‹describing, interpreting, evaluation, and theorizing‹which in turn address four basic questions: What is here? What is it about? How good is it? Is it art? ŠThe book provides in two short appendixes, practical advice on writing about photographs and on conducting casual and directed discussion of photographsŠ Monterey Peninsula College, Anne Canright

5-0 out of 5 stars A framework which can be used with any visual medium...
The book is itself an excellent introduction to that process of questioning which constitutes the acquisition of meaning in modern contexts. It discusses issues such as feminism, postmodernism, and the disputes surrounding artistic controversy and censorship. It bristles with penetrating accounts by critical writersŠOne of the brilliant strengths of this book is that the reader actively participates in the critical process by witnessing it in action through the minds of contemporary writers and photographersŠ Canadian Review of Art Education, Donald Berglund ... Read more

4. The Reconfigured Eye: Visual Truth in the Post-Photographic Era
by William J. Mitchell
list price: $35.00
our price: $35.00
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Asin: 0262631601
Catlog: Book (1992-07-25)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 353953
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"An intelligent and readable approach to the digitization of images. . . . A useful overview of a critical subject." -- New York Times Book Review Enhanced? Or faked? Today the very idea of photographic veracity is being radically challenged by the emerging technology of digital image manipulation and synthesis: photographs can now be altered at will in ways that are virtually undetectable, and photorealistic synthesized images are becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish from actual photographs. Continuing William Mitchell's investigations of how we understand, reason about, and use images, The Reconfigured Eye provides the first systematic, critical analysis of the digital imaging revolution. It describes the technology of the digital image in detail and looks closely at how it is changing the way we explore ideas, at its aesthetic potential, and at the ethical questions it raises. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

4-0 out of 5 stars The consequences of digital
Mitchell's book might be thought of as two books. It is mainly about the meaning of photography at a time when pictures can be so easily manipulated and changed. It's really a philosophical discussion of truth and ethics. However, the middle section of the book is more about the technical aspects of 2D and 3D graphics, with explanations of the fundamental concepts that underlie digital images and compositing techniques, as well as computer modeled and rendered scenes.

And fortunately, both sections are great. THE RECONFIGURED EYE is valuable both as a reconsideration of photographic truth in a the context of new technologies, and as a book to help photographers, graphic designers, architects, and anyone working with photographs to understand how the basic functions of 2D and 3D software work and why. Though I wish there were even more photos of some of the paintings and photographs he refers to, there are many great pictures of paintings, photos, and rendered scenes to illustrate what he describes in the text. This is definitely one of the more thoughtful books on digital images and there's a lot of good stuff here to think about.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Must-Have for Digital Artists
I can't believe that no one has written a review here of this essential book! Anyone creating, curating, writing about, or simply trying to appreciate computer-based art work should own this text. Mitchell weaves together theory, history, and technique to explain the fundamentals of this new field. His scholarship and knowledge of the area are unbeatable. ... Read more

5. The New History of Photography
by Michel Frizot, Pierre Albert, Colin Harding
list price: $39.95
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Asin: 3829013280
Catlog: Book (1998-11-01)
Publisher: Konemann
Sales Rank: 184969
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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One can only imagine the amazement felt by L.J.M. Daguerre, when, in the summer of 1839, he gazed upon the first photograph ever made. An image of the view from his Paris apartment of the bustling Boulevard du Temple, it was remarkably detailed yet mysteriously vacant, save for a single man in the distance who appeared to be having his boots polished; the rest of the passersby evaded capture due to the necessarily long exposure. And thus began the world-shaking practice of photography. A New History of Photography was created after the French Ministry of Culture observed that there were no books produced in France that addressed the history of the art form. Rather than present the standard chronological survey, this book's creators chose to produce a volume that would encompass photography's historical evolution as well as its role in society.

Editor Michel Frizot writes a substantial portion of the text, along with 29 additional authors who offer a plethora of analytical information and a wide variety of points of view. Periods, social practice, contextual analysis, historical questions, influential innovations, and aesthetic turning points are explored around themes ranging from chemistry to the snapshot, ethnography to color printing, evidence to advertising, and much, much more. This ambitious book includes many images not familiar to an American audience, offering a fascinating visual smorgasbord that demonstrates the breadth of applications and interpretations that photography has seen from its very inception. Put simply, it is a book about why people take photographs and what photographs can do. At a whopping 776 pages, this weighty volume has something for everyone. --A.C. Smith ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars A HISTORY OF EVOLUTION
Yes, we all love Avedon, Bourke-White, Capa, Doisneau, etc. But do we all understand how photography evolved from gelatine and silver plates, to Man Ray and then Newton? If you want to have a general perpective of the history of photography, and access to wonderful pictures not previosly divulged to the general public, I would recommend this comprehensive and well organized book

5-0 out of 5 stars "New History" very, very comprehensive.
This is a lot of book. A lot, a lot of book. It's essays are well written to be easily accessible, clearly showing that the contributors understand and are passionate about photography. Clever thematic content allows you to browse at topics that interest you rather than get lost in a strictly chronological rendition of photography's development. The essays deftly weave together the various influences on the medium as it mutated over time. But best of all are the hundreds of photos, many that neither I nor other professional photographers I know have ever seen published elsewhere. Serious photographers are interested in the development of photographic representation. This book is the ideal place to begin to get to grips with that whole fascinating topic. Highly recommended. ... Read more

6. The Photograph as Contemporary Art (World of Art)
by Charlotte Cotton
list price: $16.95
our price: $11.53
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Asin: 0500203806
Catlog: Book (2004-11-29)
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Sales Rank: 47553
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Book Description

The first accessible guide to the key artists and uses of photography in contemporary art since the mid-1980s.

An ideal introduction to this popular subject in contemporary culture, this highly readable book surveys work by more than 150 artist-photographers: Andreas Gursky, Nan Goldin, Philip-Lorca di Corcia, Richard Billingham, Jurgen Teller, Thomas Demand, Yinka Shonibare, Thomas Ruff, Jeff Wall, Wolfgang Tillmans, and many more.

More than 200 examples of the most important works are illustrated. Themed chapters consider subjects such as narrative and storytelling in art photography, photographing the everyday and the insignificant, the use of photography in conceptual art, and the cool, detached, objective aesthetic prevalent in current art photography. 210 illustrations, 100 in color. ... Read more

7. Golden Age of British Photography 1839-1900: Photographs from the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, With Selections from the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Royal Archives, Windsor Castle, the
by Mark Haworth-Booth, Michael Weaver, Victoria and Albert Museum, Inc Aperture, Philadelphia Museum of Art
list price: $80.00
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Asin: 0893811440
Catlog: Book (1984-09-01)
Publisher: Viking Penguin Inc
Sales Rank: 1621328
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Book Description

Introduced to the British public in 1839 by its inventor, William Henry Fox Talbot, photography quickly took its place-alongside explorations of new territories, discoveries in science, and expanding horizons in the arts-as an authentic wonder in an age of wonders. The Golden Age of British Photography presents photographs that represent the era, drawn from the extensive collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum and from other major museums and archives.

The medium's early history unfolds in 199 images, from one of photography's first successes, Talbot's enchanting view of his breakfast table, to Paul Martin's turn-of-the-century beach scenes, the precursors of today's snapshots.

Uninhibited by notions of what the new invention should be, early photographers depicted exotic faraway lands and the disappearing rural landscape, British cathedrals and London slums, the public and private faces of the time, and the newsworthy events that brought the times into view. These images, rarely seen and never before shown together, present photography at its most miraculous, its purest, and its most daring.
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8. Seizing the Light: A History of Photography
by RobertHirsch
list price: $43.75
our price: $43.75
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Asin: 0697143619
Catlog: Book (1999-10-22)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages
Sales Rank: 335190
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"Its chief virtues are a succinct, mostly lucid style, a wide intellectual scope, a flood of ideas and insights at every turn, sensitivity to the technology and culture of photography, and a willingness to attend to images . . . In the end, perhaps the best measure of a text is whether or not one would choose it from among all the offerings to use in class. I have chosen to use this book." - Photo Review, Spring 2000

"An excellent introductory history book." - Afterimage: The Journal of Media Arts and Cultural Criticism

In this wonderful and entertaining book, Hirsch has produced the most useful, readable, and practical successor to Newhall.Seizing the Light is written in a friendly, accessible way -- dense with information, but more hip and lively than other offerings, especially those aimed at college students." - exposure: The research journal of the Society for Photographic Education. Vol. 32.2 (Fall, 1999)

Hirsch's prose is very digestible.He writes in a clear, lively style with a minimum of jargon." - Views: the newsletter of the Visual Material Section of the Society of American Archivists

Science, culture, and art come together in this new history of photography – the first since the early 1980’s.With superlative production values, rare and unusual prints, and a fresh perspective, Robert Hirsch has written the ideal companion to the first 200 years of photography.
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Reviews (2)

2-0 out of 5 stars Good coverage of subject but poorly written
The scope and range of Hirsch's book excited me--at last a new comprehensive history of American and European photography! Unfortunately the quality of the illustrations was poor, smudgy halftones and no duotones. (Rosenblum's WORLD HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY has much better). The book even reproduces some color photographs in black and white.But it is Hirsch's writing that really disappoints: long awkward sentences that wander in circles, sentence fragments, and some obviously absurd statements. Take Hirsch's comment on a 1852 daguerreotype of the moon (p. 45): "Previously only a few people had seen the surface of the moon." No doubt he meant something else, but I suspect every sighted human being who ever lived has seen the surface of the moon.

Anyone who wishes to learn about the history of photography should read Beaumont Newhall, Naomi Rosenblum, or a host of others before turning to Robert Hirsch.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book with great pictures.
This is my personal favorite book on the history of photography. There is another one called World History of Photography that is good too. This book, Seizing the Light, is designed very well, and includes many crisp images (and all the landmark photographs in history). The book is divided into the following sections: Advancing toward photography, the daguerrotype, calotype rising, pictures on glass, prevailing events, a new medium, standardizing the practice, new ways of visualizing time and space, evolution of pictorialism, modernism, new culture of light, social documents, nabbing time, photography and the halftone, the atomic age, new frontiers, changing realities, and finally thinking about photography. I like this book because it is organized so well, and it is easy to navigate while studying it. ... Read more

9. Photography : A Cultural History (Trade Version)
by Mary Warner Marien
list price: $85.00
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Asin: 0810905590
Catlog: Book (2002-10-15)
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Sales Rank: 691273
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Book Description

Providing a new perspective on many of the old stories in the history of photography, Mary Warner Marien's book is a provocative and informative read. She shows how the medium developed in various historical, economic, political, and cultural settings worldwide, and discusses the many uses to which photography has been put-from art to vernacular, documentary to photojournalism, and science to advertising.

Incorporating new research not covered in any other survey, Marien thoughtfully explores ideas generated by and about photography in each period, and examines photography's key role in contemporary art and today's increasing use of digital photography. With a panoply of arresting images by famous photographers such as Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, August Sander, and Margaret Bourke-White-as well as many unusual and seldom-seen pictures-the book is as enticing to look at as its original ideas are stimulating to consider. ... Read more

10. Photography : A Critical Introduction
by Liz Wells
list price: $32.95
our price: $32.95
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Asin: 0415190584
Catlog: Book (2000-03)
Publisher: Routledge
Sales Rank: 108476
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Surveying the spectrum of photography from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, Photography: A Critical Introduction is the first book to examine key debates in photographic theory and place them in their proper social and political contexts. While most histories of photography invariably focus on the works of the "great photographers," this book is written especially to provide a coherent introduction to the nature of photographic seeing and its personal and cultural significance through history.

Contributors lucidly examine a range of major photographic theories, histories, genres and issues, covering such topics as key debates in photographic theory and history; documentary photography and photojournalism; personal and popular photography; photography and commodity culture; photography and the human body; photography as art; and photography in the age of electronic imaging.

This completely revised and updated second edition includes detailed case studies; key references, biographies of key thinkers, and margin notes; a full glossary of terms, comprehensive end-of-chapter bibliographies, and resource information, including guides to public archives and useful web sites. The lavish illustrations include images by Bill Brandt, Lee Friedlander, Hannah Hoch, Roshini Kempadoo, Dorothea Lange, Lee Miller, Alexander Rodchenko, Jacob Riis, Sebastio Salgado, Andres Serrano and Jo Spence. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

4-0 out of 5 stars More academic than practical
"Photography: A Critical Introduction" offers decent insight into some ideas and theories surrounding the new instrument of art, the camera. It should be noted that very few photos or examples are used in the book, and this absence definitely accounts for the book's partly dry flavor. "Photography" is probably less appropriate for hobbyists and more so for academics, but none the less remains a worthwhile read for those ready to sit down and study.

3-0 out of 5 stars Reads like a textbook.
Photography: A Critical Introduction has a lot of information. If you really want to learn about photographs go for it. But beware, this book is not for the casual amateur. It's a tough read - very much like a text book. For the novice you may want to consider "Criticizing Photographs: An Introdution to Understanding Images" first. ... Read more

11. Contest of Meaning: Critical Histories of Photography
list price: $40.00
our price: $34.40
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Asin: 0262521695
Catlog: Book (1992-02-25)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 111770
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

These fourteen essays, with over 200 illustrations, critically examine and challenge the prevailing formalist values of late modernism that have been applied to the medium and suggest new ways to explain the history of photography. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Ouch, but Ahhh.
This book makes my brain hurt, but in a good way. Some of the essays are pretty tough to read as they are very deeply rooted in the world of art historical criticism, but don't let that stop you from getting this book; you'll learn a lot and come away with some good insights into the subject of photography and the history of photography. It would be very helpful to get a companion book that contains some of the artists and works that are discussed here, so you have the images to look at and non-critical, historical looks at the artists for background and context. Something like Beumont Newhall's "History of Photography" would be an excellent match. ... Read more

12. Pandemic:Facing AIDS
by Annie Leibovitz, Joao Silva, Rory Kennedy
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Asin: 1884167179
Catlog: Book (2003-11)
Publisher: Umbrage Editions Inc
Sales Rank: 181455
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Book Description

An HBO Documentary Film; Book; Exhibition; Education Packet; CD; Website; and Nationwide PSAs. Essays by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Nadine Gordimer, Rory Kennedy, Nan Richardson, and Jeffrey Sachs. Photographs by over 100 award-winning photographers representing 50 countries: Genin Andrada, Mary Berridge, Alessandro Balteo, Nancy Burson, John Dugdale, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Aleksandr Glyadyelov, Nan Goldin, Gran Fury, Sunil Gupta, Annie Leibovitz, Robert Mapplethorpe, Don McCullin, James Nachtwey, Nicholas Nixon, Richard Sawdon Smith, Oscar Sanchez Gomez, Gary Schneider, Andres Serrano, Joao Silva, David Wojnarowicz, and others.

In our world today, there are forty million people living with HIV/AIDS - forty million stories of hardship, pain, and anger - but also of courage and resilience. PANDEMIC: Facing AIDS brings us more than 200 stirring and groundbreaking images from around the world, in an emotional survey of the global epidemic. Featuring work by over one hundred award-winning, international photographers and artists. PANDEMIC captures the diversity of approaches to this topic over the past twenty years. The work gathered here has been used to document and to educate, to agitate and to protest, to salute friends lost and to mourn the deaths of family and strangers alike. A comprehensive survey of photographic responses to HIV/AIDS, PANDEMIC: Facing AIDS superbly captures the stunning complexity of the pandemic and conveys the despair, rage, heroism, and, ultimately, hope, that the photographic community has mustered to face the AIDS pandemic. Their legacy is a call to action and a challenge to each of us: toward a world without AIDS. The international traveling exhibition which opened at the Museu d'Art Contemporanie de Barcelona (MACBA) as part of the XIV International AIDS Conference, is travelling through 2005 to Pretoria, South Africa, The U.N., Moscow, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Bangkok, Atlanta, and other venues.

Pandemic: Facing AIDS Project supporters: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Home Box Office; The AOL Time Warner Foundation; Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS); M-A-C AIDS FUND and M-A-C Cosmetics; The Elton John AIDS Foundation; The Pfizer Foundation; Doctors of the World-USA; Brazilian Ministry of Health; Levi Strauss Foundation; The Red Ribbon Foundation; The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation; American Foundation for AIDS Research (amFAR); Firelight Foundation; The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation; The Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute; Warner Music Group. ... Read more

13. A Dog's Life : A Book of Classic Photographs (Dog's Life)
by Life Magazine
list price: $14.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0316526916
Catlog: Book (1995-11-01)
Publisher: Little, Brown
Sales Rank: 291062
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

It is often said that in order to take a phenominal photograph, one has to be in the right place at the right time. Some of these photos, were obviously taken at the spur of the moment by someone who was indeed at the right place at the right time. Any book put out by Life Magazine immediately captures my attention and this one was no exception. While there are many spontaneous shots here, there were also several that looked just too "posed and stiff for my liking." For example, there is one of a white poodle posing for the camera that looks cute in a book, but you better hope the guy never takes off out the back door and heads for the woods! His brushed out poodle cut rather resembles one of Dolly Parton's wigs. My preference is natural photographs that are taken when one least expects the click of the shutter and, thankfully, there are several of those here as well. This is not one of my favourite books on canine photography, but it is still one worth having.

5-0 out of 5 stars Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul
It you appreciate great photography and love dogs, this book is the perfect blending of both! Our pooch pals are captured in numerous poses and activities documenting the many ways they are an integral part of modern life. This is a book I reach for if I want a good laugh, or some tugs at my heartstrings. Dog lovers---enjoy! ... Read more

14. Magnum Stories
by Chris Boot
list price: $79.95
our price: $50.37
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Asin: 0714842451
Catlog: Book (2004-12-01)
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Sales Rank: 6210
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Imagine having 61 widely published photographers from around the world candidly discuss their careers and beliefs while showing you key images from their portfolios. That is the engaging concept of Magnum Stories. From Iran-born Abbas (whose career began with a series about the Vietcong in the 1970s) to Patrick Zachmann (who has documented the lives of Malian immigrants in his native France), each photographer is given ample space to talk about his or her work. Editor Chris Boot accompanies the interviews with a brief explanation of the cultural or political background of each suite of images. The one thing the interviewees have in common is past or current membership in Magnum, a photographers' cooperative founded in 1947 by Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson and David Seymour as a means of breaking free from the editorial tyranny of Life and other photo-based magazines. Boot's introduction deftly summarizes Magnum's history and the practicalities of postwar photography. The presence of vintage "Magnum stories" by such photographers as Erich Hartmann ("Our Daily Bread") and W. Eugene Smith ("Country Doctor") adds a welcome historical dimension. While the founding generation were mostly photo-journalists who organized their images into visual "stories," today's members often pursue topics of personal interest with photographs that do not relate a straightforward narrative. These topics range from outlaw biker gangs in the U.S. (Dennis Stock) to the mountain peoples of Laos, Guatemala and Georgia (John Vink), from the tacky seaside resort of New Brighton in Liverpool, England (Martin Parr) to Siberian prison camps (Carl De Keyzer). With nearly 800 illustrations, this distinctive, square-format book offers a kaleidoscopic survey of the many faces of documentary photography. —-Cathy Curtis ... Read more

15. At the Edge of the Light: Thoughts on Photography and Photographers, on Talent and Genius
by David Travis
list price: $30.00
our price: $30.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1567922112
Catlog: Book (2003-07-01)
Publisher: David R. Godine Publisher
Sales Rank: 138386
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Thought-Provoking But Imperfect
The book consists of seven essays, most of them based on 1991-2001 lectures. The first two deal with Brassaï and Kertész, who were active in the early part of the twentieth century. The next two concern the parallel between creativity in mathematics and in photography, and the importance of narrative in photography. The author concludes by musing on late photographs (or sets of photos) from three outstanding photographers: "Point Lobos" by Edward Weston (1944), the "Equivalents" series of clouds by Stieglitz (1920s - early 1930s), and "Fall in Movement" by Strand (1973). Some 10 pages of notes follow the 162 pages of text.

I found the book thought-provoking, and many of the photographs were new to me, but the book could have been improved in the following ways. First, an index would have enabled the reader to find specific passages or artworks of interest. For example, one might like to see again the paragraphs on Poincaré on pages 74-75, or the photos by Sternfeld on pages 80 and 85. Second, it would have been nice to know the dimensions of the original photographs. A work that is only a few square inches in size will have a different impact than one that covers an entire wall. Third, virtually the entire book discusses creations by white men; it would have been nice to introduce some diversity in race and gender. Finally, while the off-white matte 6"x8.5" paper is lovely for the text, it does not allow high-quality reproduction of the photographs. Pure white semi-glossy paper in a larger format would have been better.

Buy this book from! ... Read more

16. The Mind's Eye: Writings on Photography and Photographers
by Henri Cartier-Bresson, Michael L. Sand
list price: $19.95
our price: $13.57
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0893818755
Catlog: Book (1999-09-01)
Publisher: Aperture
Sales Rank: 52251
Average Customer Review: 3.75 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The first compilation of writings by a master of photography.

One of the leading lights in photography of the twentieth century, Henri Cartier-Bresson is also a shrewd observer and critic. His writings on photography and photographers, which have appeared sporadically over the past forty-five years, are gathered here for the first time. Several have never before appeared in English.

The Mind's Eye features Cartier-Bresson's famous text on "the decisive moment" as well as his observations on Moscow, Cuba, and China during turbulent times, which ring with the same immediacy and visual intensity that he brings to his photography.

Cartier-Bresson remains as direct and insightful as ever in his writings. His commentary on photographer friends he has known-including Robert Capa, André Kertész, Ernst Haas, and Sarah Moon-reveal the impassioned and compassionate vision for which Cartier-Bresson is beloved.
... Read more

Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars A small book with a lot of insight
I got HCB's book from the library this week and couldn't stop reading it since I started.
Mind you this book has its pluses and minuses:
It is gives good insight in HCB's style of thinking and in general photography in his own words. He talks about his little experiences in China, Cuba, Russia and also about his friends.
The book is very brief and u yearn for more of his stories and experience. It has very less photographs, so if you are looking for that you might get disappointed.

With all that said, I would definitely recommend all of u Photography fans to read it at least once if your local library carries it.

3-0 out of 5 stars It is not what I expected
I bought this book thinking that I was going to receive more insight of Cartier-Bresson style. There is something but I expected more about the thinking of this master of Photography.

3-0 out of 5 stars You won't find what you want here
This book is certainly looks interesting for anybody wanting to learn a bit more about the art and thinking of Cartier-Bresson, and indeed it is beautifully designed and produced. Unfortunatly the the little scraps of information that it contains seem as if they have been published just beacause they have indeed come from the great masters mouth. I mean its all kind of throw away stuff obviously never intended to be published with perhaps a couple of interesting paragraphs -but you probably knew those ones anyway-. So if you really want to study his work get "the artless art" if you want to learn from his experience, look at his pictures, you won't get much from this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars First compilation of his writings by Henri Cartier-Bresson
This is the nicest book I've ever read on photography. Bresson explains his art in a very comprehensive way and invites us to think about the photography. He also reminds us one thing that we are usually keen to forget about it: The photograph is nothing without it's content; The content must be the reflection of our life.. It was a real pleasure for me to read this great master's well filtered thoughts (over 90 years!)on photography. For those who think photograph really does matters ... Read more

17. Bystander : A History of Street Photography with a new Afterword on SP since the 1970s
by Joel Meyerowitz, Colin Westerbeck
list price: $35.00
our price: $22.05
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0821227262
Catlog: Book (2001-08-15)
Publisher: Bulfinch
Sales Rank: 166635
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Book Description

This landmark book, a monumental chronicle of the photographic genre created from the chaotic energy of everyday street life, grew out of a fifteen-year collaboration between an esteemed curator and a distinguished photographer. The work of such celebrated masters as Atget, Stieglitz, Cartier-Bresson, Brassaï, Walker Evans, Robert Frank, and Garry Winogrand are presented here, along with extraordinary photographs by complete unknowns. Colin Westerbeck's enlightening text illuminates each of these images, and a new illustrated afterword by Westerbeck, only available in this paperback edition, examines contemporary street photography. ... Read more

18. Photography's Antiquarian Avant-Garde: The New Wave in Old Processes
by Lyle Rexer
list price: $49.95
our price: $31.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810904020
Catlog: Book (2002-05-01)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 76977
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In direct rejection of the point-and-click tricks of digital photography, arenegade group of artists have turned their attention to near-obscure 19th-centuryprocesses from cyanotypes to daguerreotypes. Featuring 120 color images and works by60 artists, this is the only book to chart this worldwide revival. The members of theAntiquarian Avant-Garde, who include Adam Fuss, Sally Mann, and Jayne Hinds Bidaut,seek to reengage the physical, hands-on facets of photography, and to celebrate thediverse, idiosyncratic results.

An essay by Chuck Close and an interview with Sally Mann enhance LyleRexer's lively text, which highlights the importance of the new movement for art andphotography. A glossary gives detailed insight into such diverse methods asdaguerreotypes, photograms, tintypes, and gum bichromates. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Coffee Table Book
Beautifuly constructed book with alot of really nice images. Certainly anyone could appreciate this book. My only complaint is that in the opening/introductory chapters, there is alot of unused space and few images until you get past that. ... Read more

19. London Then and Now
by Diane Burstein
list price: $17.98
our price: $17.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1571459847
Catlog: Book (2003-02)
Publisher: Thunder Bay Press (CA)
Sales Rank: 32151
Average Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Celebrating this beloved city, London Then and Now offers a unique combination of historic interest and contemporary beauty. This book features dozens of fascinating archival photographs contrasted with specially commissioned, full-color images of the same scene today. Each work is a visual lesson in the historic changes of one of our greatest urban landscapes. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

3-0 out of 5 stars Rather disappointing: strange choice of subjects
This book contains some beautiful illustrations of London, together with much interesting information. The "then" photos seem to date mostly from 80-150 years ago. I learned several things from the commentaries, even though I lived in or near London for many years, and made every effort to learn about the city! However, the choice of subject for many of the comparisons seems less than ideal. Surely, in a "Then and Now" book, we want to see how much things have changed over the years, don't we? Hence, we don't really need to see locations where the comparative photos prove that very little has changed! For example, do we really need to see "then and now" pictures of Westminster Abbey, just to confirm that it really has NOT changed perceptibly during the past hundred years or so? I don't think so. In a world-class city where so much has changed, via either redevelopment or wanton destruction, there are many fascinating locations that should have been afforded priority in such a book, but which are omitted altogether. Examples: the South Kensington Imperial Institute/Imperial College site (actually mentioned in the book's Introduction), Holland Park House, etc. I can only imagine that the author was forced to draw on a limited stock of "then" photographic material. ... Read more

20. Chautauqua
by Jeffrey Simpson
list price: $19.95
our price: $19.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810926083
Catlog: Book (1999-06-01)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 757733
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Chautauquans Don't Want You to Buy This Book!
An excellent, digestible description and history of the Chautauqua Institution. This book is filled with wonderful photos -- both current and archival -- and a succinct text describing the 126-year history of this remarkable cultural, recreational, educational and religious center. If you've experienced Chautauqua, it's a wonderful description of the ups and downs and ultimate success of this education-vacation community. If you've never been to this Western New York State landmark, read this book and start packing your bags. ... Read more

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