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Robert Frank's 'The Americans'
The Art of Documentary Photography
Now Available
Price £32.50, $43
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ISBN 9781841503158
Paperback 200 pages
240x174mm
Published December 2010
Imprint: Intellect
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Books by Jonathan Day
Books in Visual Arts
Chapter Titles     |      Reviews     |      Comments

In the mid 50s, Swiss-born New Yorker Robert Frank embarked on a ten-thousand-mile road trip across post-war America, capturing thousands of photographs of all levels of a rapidly changing society. The resultant photo-book, The Americans, represents a seminal moment in both photography and in America’s emerging understanding of itself. To mark the book’s fiftieth anniversary, Jonathan Day revisits this pivotal work and contributes a thoughtful and revealing critical commentary. Though the importance of The Americans has been widely acknowledged, it still retains much of its mystery. This comprehensive analysis places it thoroughly in the context of contemporary photography, literature, painting, music and advertising.

Contains 8 black and white photos.

Chapter titles
Contents
Acknowledgements
Foreword by Eamonn McCabe
Introduction
Part One: America and The Americans
Frank and the 50s
Developing the Americans
The Americans as the love child of ‘art’ and ‘documentary’
The creation, selection and programming of The Americans’ images
Image and text
Part Two: themes in The Americans
People of the Flag
On the Road
Losing my religion: new icons for a new civilisation
The Americans and The Family of Man
The Americans and the promotional images of Standard Oil
The primacy of the visual
Part Three: The Americans as a photographic sequence
Conclusion
Bibliography
Reviews
'"Robert Frank never did say very much and there is not a single word by him in 'The Americans'. Jonathan Day in this book has expertly taken over as Frank's narrator." "As Jack Kerouac says in his introduction to 'The Americans' "To Robert Frank I now give this message: You got eyes. And now we have the words." "' – Eamonn McCabe (Picture Editor of The Guardian from 1988 to 2001)

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