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  1. #1
    bonk's Avatar
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    book "Photography: A Critical Introduction" by Liz Wells

    Is this book any good? When reading the index and the description, it seems to be the book I am looking for. A book about the "theory" of photography, that tries to answer the question "What is photography?". Its approach seems to be serious and "scientific", yet still approachable and a good introductory overview. It also seems to be some sort of reference book that has been around for quite a while.

    What is your opinion about this book? Is there any other book with a similar topic, concept and reputation?

  2. #2
    bonk's Avatar
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    I just got a private message on a possible alternative, similar book: "On Photography" by Susan Sontag (thanks Ian C). That one seems to be more USA-centric and "opinionated".
    Last edited by bonk; 08-26-2011 at 01:38 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  3. #3

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    You will definitely get opinions about 'On Photography', never mind what is in the book 8-)
    I feel, therefore I photograph.

  4. #4

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    Books you might want to look at are

    Victor Burgin Thinking photography, Photography in print and Light Matters both by Vicky Goldberg, and Classic essays on photography Trachtenberg .
    These are collections of essays by photographic theorists and photographers
    An good intro into the theory is
    David Bate Photography, and I would highly recommend Stephen Shore's The nature of photography, Criticizing photographs by Terry Barrett is an interesting insight into evaluating images , If you have an interest in Still life looking at the overlooked by Norman Bryson is worth reading. The classic theory of photography books are Barths camera Lucida and Susan Sontag on photography . Liz Wells comes from a direction which some might describe as marxist and has an academic style that can leave some people greatly underwhelmed .

  5. #5

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    apples and oranges

    if you go with sontag, get also her postcript, regarding the pain of others

  6. #6

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    For an overview of the various theories on photography, try Ashley la Grange "Basic Critical Theory for Photographers"
    van Huyck Photo
    "Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"

  7. #7
    CGW
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    Geoff Dyer's "The Ongoing Moment" is also worth a look.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by aluncrockford View Post
    Books you might want to look at are

    Liz Wells comes from a direction which some might describe as marxist and has an academic style that can leave some people greatly underwhelmed .
    Never heard of Liz Wells, but what do her political leanings have to do with a book on photography?
    If I had been present at the creation, I would have given some useful hints for the better arrangement of the Universe.
    Alfonso the Wise, 1221-1284

  9. #9
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    My advise is to keep an open mind, don't draw conclusions too Early, and read as much as you can. A good starting place is in the beginning, the history of...
    Everytime I find a film or paper that I like, they discontinue it. - Paul Strand - Aperture monograph on Strand

  10. #10

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    Never heard of Liz Wells, but what do her political leanings have to do with a book on photography?

    This might help

    http://bjaesthetics.oxfordjournals.o.../2/109.extract

    http://www.marxist.com/ArtAndLiterat...m_and_art.html

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