How the Other Half Looks: The Lower East Side and the Afterlives of Images (Paperback)

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How New York's Lower East Side inspired new ways of seeing America

New York City's Lower East Side, long viewed as the space of what Jacob Riis notoriously called the other half, was also a crucible for experimentation in photography, film, literature, and visual technologies. Sara Blair traces the career of the Lower East Side as a place where image-makers, writers, and social reformers tested new techniques for apprehending America--and their subjects looked back, confronting the means used to represent them. This dynamic shaped the birth of American photojournalism, early cinema, and the changing life of print culture as well as the work of such figures as Stephen Crane, Henry Roth, Ben Shahn, Allen Ginsberg, Martha Rosler, and LeRoi Jones. How the Other Half Looks examines the practices of observation that emerged from this critical site of encounter, showing how they have informed changing narratives of America, its citizens, and its possible futures.

About the Author

Sara Blair is the Patricia S. Yaeger Collegiate Professor of English and a faculty associate in the Department of American Culture and the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan. Her books include Harlem Crossroads: Black Writers and the Photograph in the Twentieth Century (Princeton) and, with Eric Rosenberg, Trauma and Documentary Photography of the FSA.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780691202877
ISBN-10: 0691202877
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication Date: July 14th, 2020
Pages: 304
Language: English


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