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A Scenic Road

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by cLeave a Comment

“Past is Prologue. […] In its time American Exodus was a pioneering effort to combine words and photographs. […] Perhaps by enabling us to turn to the past as to a rearview mirror, it will help us to find clues for moderating the harshness of the impact of further exodus from the land upon people in cities”    – Paul Schuster …

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Recording Lives

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Kira Williams1 Comment

The foreword included an insinuation that the quotes in You Have Seen Their Faces were fabricated. Making up quotes about the subjects of the photo bends the interpretation of that photograph. If a photograph is supposed to give visual testimony to the things they write about, and supposed to be proof in and of itself of something that really happened …

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Photography During the Depression

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Graydon Feinstein1 Comment

Photography was an important tool during the Great Depression because it “gives credible reality to a people who are no longer here, to an environment that is changed, and to an art that is increasingly dependent on photo-screen transfer. They didn’t have photoshop and the only real manipulation the photographers could do was with burning and dashing, which made the …

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Being Black, and Other Precarious Positions, in the Great Depression

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by EllisLeave a Comment

Even the most dramatic parts of the Great Depression were simply exaggerations of existing issues in American society or the capitalist system. This includes the persecution of blacks and the dramatic inequality between whites and blacks in the United States. At least, that’s what this week’s readings indicate.  In An American Exodus, Lange and Taylor document mass migrations caused by …

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The Truth Behind “You Have Seen Their Faces”

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Richard1 Comment

One of the more interesting ideas in the piece about “You Have Seen Their Faces” is how integral the economic and social suffering at the time was to opening up the possibilities of a medium. “It’s difficult to say just what combination of factors created photography’s role as the most influential public medium and public art form during the 1930s, …

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Gringos

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Freddy Leiva1 Comment

The texts and photographs that depict travel during the tough depression times are endlessly shocking. Coming from Nicaragua, it’s insanely surprising to believe that America went through such rough times. The photographs are very powerful in conveying a thousand different emotions into the different expressions in people’s faces. While the texts help us understand the situation and its various underlying …

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Replacement

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Karishma SondeLeave a Comment

The displacement of millions of Americans makes it clear that the uprooting of the cemented lives and social makeup of the country revealed a deep disconnect of American life as well as a desperate need for change. Caldwell’s “Have You Seen Their Faces?” is a prime example of this. By explaining the plantation system’s effects on the 1930s agriculture, he …

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Now You See It

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Nancee1 Comment

These photographs serve as beautiful, haunting reminders of what this sort of ruin can inflict on the human race. It is a sad truth in this world that if we do not see it, we do not believe it. Documenting this time through text allows us to soak in the details and nuances of a life like this. Pictures allow …

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The Power of Photography

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Wendy1 Comment

In the photographic book You Have Seen Their Faces, Erskine Caldwell says that he wanted to “show that the fiction [he] was writing was authentically based on contemporary life in the South” (v). As a result, he teamed up with Margaret Bourke-White who was “already one of the best-known magazine photographers in the country,” in order to qualify his written …

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Worth A Thousand Words

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by John Carpentier1 Comment

I firmly believe that true, earnest empathy can be accomplished through writing. However, it can be extremely difficult to empathize with circumstances entirely removed from one’s life experiences, such as those many people encountered during the Depression. Therefore, in terms of understanding these experiences, the photography books produced during this time, such as You Have Seen Their Faces by Erskine …

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Dispossession by Cotton

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Francesca1 Comment

In You Have Seen Their Faces, the combination of words and photographs portray this theme of “contemporary exodus” that An American Exodus was speaking of. With the camera as a tool of research and documentary, I do feel as if each image evokes the complex workings of rural poverty, race relations, and power dynamics in the South as the effects of a …

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Effectiveness of Photo-Texts

In Words & Images, The Travel Habit Fall 2014 by Greta2 Comments

All three of these photo-texts use very different techniques to point out problems in America. An American Exodus by Lange and Taylor and You Have Seen Their Faces by Caldwell and Bourke-White both focus on the issues with sharecropping and the ruined lives of tenant farmers in the South. Lange and Taylor address the “living participants, who can speak” that …