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The Photograph: A Visual and Cultural History

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How do we read a photograph? In this rich and fascinating work, Graham Clarke gives a clear and incisive account of the photograph's historical development, and elucidates the insights of the most engaging thinkers on the subject, such as Roland Barthes and Susan Sontag. From the first misty "heliograph" taken by Joseph Nicephore Niepce in 1826 to the classic compositions of Cartier-Bresson and Alfred Steiglitz and the striking postmodern strategies of Robert Mapplethorpe, Clarke provides a groundbreaking examination of photography's main subject areas--landscape, the city, portraiture, the body, and reportage--as well as a detailed analysis of exemplary images in terms of their cultural and ideological contexts. With over 130 illustrations, The Photograph offers a series of discussions of major themes and genres providing an up-to-date introduction to the history of photography and creating a record of the most dazzling, penetrating, and pervasive images of our time.

248 pages, Paperback

First published May 8, 1997

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About the author

Graham Clarke

60 books2 followers
Graham Clarke was born in 1941 and is an artist, author, illustrator and humorist.

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5 stars
63 (26%)
4 stars
104 (42%)
3 stars
53 (21%)
2 stars
18 (7%)
1 star
4 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews
September 8, 2017
Read for the first year of my photography degree, lots of wonderful information but a lot to read at once. The language is extremely descriptive and perhaps "over-the-top" however still worth the read for reference, some wonderful work in there.
Profile Image for Domiziana.
3 reviews1 follower
January 27, 2022
Inizialmente acquistato per preparare un esame universitario, ho finito per leggerlo per puro piacere personale.
Profile Image for Monica.
354 reviews8 followers
March 8, 2020
Comprehensive history of photography - covering aspects of technical progress, social implications and artistic values. Interesting reading!
Profile Image for Roy McDine.
402 reviews6 followers
April 27, 2020
Well documented and illustrated, would liked to have seen more images of each photographers, but liked the format.
1 review
December 7, 2022
A well documented book about the history of photography. The technical evolution of photography and its social impact.
Profile Image for dv.
1,189 reviews43 followers
October 5, 2017
Ottima storia soprattutto per come sottolinea l'aggettivo "culturale" del titolo. Al di là dell'efficace progressione per temi e della scelta (buona) di autori e foto, quel che più funziona sono le considerazioni di carattere sociologico. Il che mette questo testo una spanna sopra molto altre storie della fotografia.
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews

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