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Street Life in London
Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington, London 1877 - (10 5/8 x 8 inches). [4], 100pp. 37 woodburytypes on 36 leaves, each with printed caption and red ruled border. Publisher's pictorial green cloth, decoratively stamped in gilt, red and black, gilt edges "The first photographic social documentation of any kind" (Gernsheim). Thomson's photographs in Street Life in London and the commentary upon the images by Thomson and Adolphe Smith, depict a London in which life is a harsh and continuous struggle. The characters on view here are familiar to us more from Dickens' novels or from an idea of the Whitechapel of Jack the Ripper than from any nostalgic image of a strait-laced or patrician Victorianism. Thomson and Smith are, however, sympathetic to the objects of their study and seem intent on cataloguing the variety of types to be found rather than attempting any Barnum-like freakshow. As Thomson himself writes: "The precision and accuracy of photography enables us to present true types of the London poor and shield us from the accusation of either underrating or exaggerating individual peculiarities of appearance." "Street Life in London is a pioneering work of social documentation in photographs and words . one of the most significant and far-reaching photobooks in the medium's history" (Parr & Badger). Hasselblad 42; Gernsheim, p. 447; Truthful Lens 169; Parr & Badger I:p.48. [Attributes: Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Donald A. Heald Rare Books (ABAA)]
Last Found On: 2017-05-05           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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