Illuminations: Women Writing on Photography from the 1850s to the Present

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Liz Heron, Val Williams
Duke University Press, 1996 - Photography - 521 pages
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The first anthology of its kind, Illuminations presents a comprehensive selection of women’s writings on photography. It proposes a new and different history by demonstrating the ways in which women’s perspectives have advanced photographic criticism over the last 150 years.
Extraordinarily wide-ranging in its scope, this collection chronicles the role of women in photography as critics, historians, and practitioners. Readers will find Julia Margaret Cameron’s bold description of her photographic method, Rosalind Krauss’s exploration of what the camera means for Surrealism, Margaret Bourke-White and Carol Squiers with differing perspectives on Life magazine, as well as essays by Eudora Welty, Susan Sontag, Lucy Lippard, Berenice Abbott, Dorthea Lange, and many others. Illuminations begins with a short piece on the daguerreotype by Elizabeth Barrett Browning then moves through the avant-garde influence of Dada, Bauhaus, and surrealism, to fashion and portrait photography, continuing with documentary and reportage, the emergence of feminist analysis, and postmodern and postcolonial criticism. Encompassing many varied points of view, this volume offers pieces on individual photographers such as Diane Arbus, Ansel Adams, Barbara Kruger, Edward Weston, and Cindy Sherman along with theoretical work by contemporary writers including Jane Gallop, Coco Fusco, and Laura Mulvey.
An historic anthology, Illuminations shows that women have been writing about photography from its beginnings and have intervened in the key debates of the past century and a half. It will welcomed by those interested in photography, gender studies, and women and the arts.

Contributors. Berenice Abbott, Dawn Ades, Susan H. Aiken, Jan Avgikos, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Margaret Bourke-White, Deborah Bright, Susan Butler, Julia Margaret Cameron, Cynthia Chris, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Gen Doy, Olive Edis, Ute Eskildsen, Andrea Fisher, Gisèle Freund, Coco Fusco, Jane Gallop, Nan Goldin, Jewelle Gomez, Jan Zita Grover, Judith Mara Gutman, Maria Morris Hambourg, Liz Heron, Alice Hughes, Karen Knorr, Rosalind Krauss, Annette Kuhn, Dorothea Lange, Therese Lichtenstein, Lucy Lippard, Catherine Lord, Mary Warner Marien, Elizabeth McCausland, Roberta McGrath, Lee Miller, Tina Modotti, Lucia Moholy, Laura Mulvey, Carole Naggar, Nancy Newhall, Amy Rule, Lauren Sedofsky, Ingrid Sischy, Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Susan Sontag, Jo Spence, Carol Squiers, Varvara Stepanova, Anne Tucker, Eudora Welty, Dorothy Wilding, Val Wiliams, Anne-Marie Willis, Madame Yevonde

 

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Contents

On the Daguerreotype
2
Annals of My Glass House
8
Photography During the July
14
The Camera Against the Paris Commune
21
Extending the Grand Tour
32
Germany The Weimar Republic
53
Photomontage
64
A Hundred Years of Photography
70
Tina Modotti Letters to Edward Weston
251
On Photography
260
Ansel Adams The Eloquent Light
270
Witkins Others
283
The Other Side
291
Cindy Sherman Burning
300
Winning the Game
307
Two Types of Photography Criticism
319

The Photographic Conditions
76
A Mutable Mirror Claude Cahun
91
Photography 1914
119
In Pursuit of Perfection
125
Documentary and Reportage
131
Looking at Life
140
The Assignment Ill Never Forget
151
One Time One Place
161
Documentary Photography
170
The Seige of St Malo
178
Star Wars The Photographer
185
Photography at the Crossroads
203
Crowned with Thorns Creative
223
On Photography
230
What Becomes a Legend Most
237
Of Mother Nature and Marlboro Men
333
Dykes in Context Some Problems
348
Dialogue with Spectatorship Barbara Kruger
377
Between Frames
386
The Pleasure of the Phototext
394
Interview Fetishism of BlackandWhite
403
Partial Recall
413
The Unveiled Algerian Women
422
Essential Differences Photographs
434
A Strategy of Appearances
442
Showing Our Faces A Century of Black
448
Gateway to a Labyrinth
457
Remembrance
471
Copyright

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About the author (1996)

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Liz Heron’s writings on photography have appeard in Camerawork, Creative Camera and Aperture. She is the author of Streets of Desire and A Red River.
Val Williams is an independent writer and curator. She is the author of Warworks and The Other Observers.

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