Around the World: The Grand Tour in Photo Albums

Around the World: The Grand Tour in Photo Albums

by Barbara Levine, Kirsten Jensen
     
 

Snapshots, passenger lists, itineraries, and postcards from San Francisco flapper Vera Talbot's Far East adventure. Chicagoan Clara E. Whitcomb's travel diary containing pages filled with souvenir photos, maps, and a list of titles for a future book about her travels in Egypt. These are only two of the narratives that unfold in the beautifully designed pages of

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Overview

Snapshots, passenger lists, itineraries, and postcards from San Francisco flapper Vera Talbot's Far East adventure. Chicagoan Clara E. Whitcomb's travel diary containing pages filled with souvenir photos, maps, and a list of titles for a future book about her travels in Egypt. These are only two of the narratives that unfold in the beautifully designed pages of Around the World. From Cairo to Burma and back again, authors Barbara Levine and Kirsten Jensen transport readers back tothe dawn of world travel when, Brownie cameras in tow, the middle class toured the world for the first time and painstakingly documented their discoveries within scrapbooks, diary entries, and pasted-on souvenir postcards.

Around the World traces the development of the travel photo album, from primarily narrative formsships' logs and diariesinto rich multimedia objects of sublime beauty. The book features a wealth of turn-of-the- twentieth-century photographs and ephemera such as passports, ship menus, calling cards, and newspaper clippings. Around the World evokes the pleasures of a time when the surroundings were taken in slowly and travel was an art in and of itself.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This painstakingly assembled collection gathers excerpts from the personal journals and photo albums of turn-of-the-century, middle-class American travelers to Europe, East Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. These tourists created their albums during an era when photographic visual information from foreign cultures was precious because it was rare. Many photos are intriguing as historical documents-they capture the experience of travelers who lived a century ago, and, in a few cases, they vividly illustrate daily life in exotic locales-Siam, Cambodia and Trinidad. Levine (Snapshot Chronicles) and Jensen (Picturing Arizona) assert that the experience of travel and how it is documented has been transformed with the quantum technological leaps in transportation and photography. But photo after photo resemble the holiday snapshots of a shutterbug relative: lineups of tourists posed in front of some exotic monument (e.g., the Sphinx or the Leaning Tower of Pisa). Even as the authors make an effective argument that the qualitative experience of travel has been altered, their book provides compelling visual evidence that tourist photography hasn't changed much at all. Nonetheless, avid travelers who might enjoy placing their own photo albums in historical context will be charmed by this compilation. (Dec. 3)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
School Library Journal

This painstakingly assembled collection gathers excerpts from the personal journals and photo albums of turn-of-the-century, middle-class American travelers to Europe, East Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. These tourists created their albums during an era when photographic visual information from foreign cultures was precious because it was rare. Many photos are intriguing as historical documents-they capture the experience of travelers who lived a century ago, and, in a few cases, they vividly illustrate daily life in exotic locales-Siam, Cambodia and Trinidad. Levine (Snapshot Chronicles) and Jensen (Picturing Arizona) assert that the experience of travel and how it is documented has been transformed with the quantum technological leaps in transportation and photography. But photo after photo resemble the holiday snapshots of a shutterbug relative: lineups of tourists posed in front of some exotic monument (e.g., the Sphinx or the Leaning Tower of Pisa). Even as the authors make an effective argument that the qualitative experience of travel has been altered, their book provides compelling visual evidence that tourist photography hasn't changed much at all. Nonetheless, avid travelers who might enjoy placing their own photo albums in historical context will be charmed by this compilation. (Dec. 3)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781568987088
Publisher:
Princeton Architectural Press
Publication date:
10/11/2007
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
12.25(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.87(d)

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