Long Time Coming: A Photographic Portrait of America, 1935-1943

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9780393049435: Long Time Coming: A Photographic Portrait of America, 1935-1943

Over 400 rarely or never-seen photographs of a vanished America.

Long Time Coming is derived from the 145,000 photographs made between 1935 and 1943 by a team of now-famous photographers employed by the Farm Security Administration (FSA), whose ranks included Arthur Rothstein, Ben Shahn, Dorothea Lange, and Walker Evans. We are all familiar with the iconic images of poverty that are usually associated with the project. The agency's mission, however, went well beyond photographing dispossessed rural people, and this book is proof. It includes 410 remarkable images made in large cities (including New York, Chicago, Minneapolis, Omaha, and Pittsburgh) as well as dozens of small towns and villages throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. These are images that have rarely been seen―some twenty percent have never been published before―images that present a portrait of a vanished America, a visual record of everyday existence that enhances and enlarges our assumptions about the era. Setting the pictures in context, Michael Lesy's iconoclastic, groundbreaking text intercuts excerpts from primary and secondary sources (some given as "assigned reading" to the project photographers) with an extended look at Roy Stryker, the FSA's controversial director. It presents the FSA photographs in a very different light from the bleak vision to which we are accustomed. 410 photographs

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About the Author:

Michael Lesy is one of America’s leading photographic scholars. His books include Wisconsin Death Trip, Murder City, Angel’s World, and Long Time Coming. He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, where he teaches literary journalism at Hampshire College.

Review:

A beautiful book...best looked at not just once and slowly,but several times over. -- Killing the Buddha.com, 31 January 2003

All the more impressive for its understated presentation...extraordinary. -- The New Yorker, 17 March 2003

Beyond the lush and entrancing photographs, there is the history one reads between the lines of captions. -- Chicago Tribune, Beth Kephart, 23 February 2003

Blunt,impeccably thorough...articulate...a double edged hacksaw. -- Laura Anne Brooks, Pulp, 20 February 2003

Don't miss at least looking at...Long Time Coming. -- Our Town, 23 January 2003

Here is an America long gone but well worth remembering. -- Smithsonian Magazine, Owen Edwards, January 2003

It's great to see this smart blend of photographs neatly arranged in this terrific volume. -- Picture Magazine, January/February 2003

One of the most fascinating aspects of Long Time is the glimpse it affords of obscure but remarkably talented photographers. -- Creative Loafing, Felicia Feaster, 8 January 2003

Revelatory and exceptional. -- Owen Edwards, Smithsonian, January 2003

The collection...reveals the artistry and compassion of a talented group of photographers. -- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Bob Hoover, 2 February 2003

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