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George Rodger: Village of the Nubas (Phaidon Press)


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ISBN 10: 0714838403 / ISBN 13: 9780714838403
Published by Phaidon Press Limited, London, 1999
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Vincent Borrelli, Bookseller (Albuquerque, NM, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

First edition thus (English), first printing. Originally published in 1955 in French by Robert Delpire. Hardcover. White paper-covered boards with title printed on green tipped-in label and stamped in black on spine; with photographically illustrated dust jacket. Photographs and text by George Rodger. Introduction by Peter Hamilton. 120 pp., with 37 black-and-white plates. 7-1/4 x 5-3/8 inches. Fine in Fine dust jacket. From the publisher: "In 1949 the Englishman George Rodger, one of the founding members of the Magnum photo agency, learned of the Nuba tribe while travelling in the Kordofan region of the Sudan. The Nubas were a people living just as their ancestors had lived centuries before. Remarkably, he was granted permission by the Sudanese government not only to spend time with the tribe, but to be the first ever Westerner to photograph its rituals and way of life. In 1955, Rodger's 'Nubas' photographs were published in France as Le Village de Noubas, a diary-like account in words and pictures of his journey through Kordofan. A limited number of copies were produced and the book became an instant classic. Phaidon celebrates Rodger's most famous work with the first ever English language version, in a facsimile edition of this famous book.Co-founder of the prestigious Magnum agency, George Rodger (1908-95) was a war correspondent with Life from 1939 to 1945. Traumatized by the experience of war, he embarked on a 28,000-mile journey to Africa and the Middle East, concentrating on the rituals and ways of life in close relationship with nature.". Bookseller Inventory # 106271

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Bibliographic Details

Title: George Rodger: Village of the Nubas (Phaidon...

Publisher: Phaidon Press Limited, London

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Edition: 1st Edition.

About this title


In 1949, photographer George Rodger was granted permission to spend some time with the Nuba tribe. The Nubas were a people living in a state of primitivism, exactly as their ancestors had centuries before. The photographer presented the tribe in heroic terms, remarking that the Nubas were a people whom "progress of any kind had passed by". This text collects the photographs previously published in "Le Village de Noubas", showing the people taking part in sports such as spear-throwing, wrestling, and stick-fighting.


This is the first English-language version of one of the classics of photographic literature, George Rodger's Village of the Nubas, which was originally published in France in 1955. Rodger was a Life magazine photographer during World War II, but in 1945 he reached a breaking point after having witnessed for years the atrocities of that war. He became determined to find a world in which universal values prevailed and the horror of war could never be repeated. With that, arguably naive, intent, he traveled to Africa on a quest for a society untarnished by "civilization." He found the Nubas, a southern Sudanese people living in the region around Kordofan, and developed a series of pictures of and writings about them and their customs. His photographs and writings serve as an intimate and revealing record of the state of Africa just before the "modernizing" changes of the postwar era began. Using a Rolleiflex and a Leica to capture images, and keeping copious diaries, Rodger invented the genre of "package stories," which he sold to magazines like National Geographic. His famous portrait of a dignified Korongo Nuba wrestling champion being carried aloft the shoulders of his defeated foe caught the attention of the German photographer Leni Riefenstahl, who would later document the Nubas herself. This compelling, 120-page, diary-sized hardcover includes Rodger's original text and 38 excellent black-and-white reproductions. --A.C. Smith

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