Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America

Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America

4.9 12
by James Allen

ISBN-10: 0944092691

ISBN-13: 9780944092699

Pub. Date: 01/28/2000

Publisher: Twin Palms Publishers

The Tuskegee Institute records the lynching of 4,742 blacks between 1882 and 1968. This is probably a small percentage of these murders, which were seldom reported, and led to the creation of the NAACP in 1909. Through all this terror and carnage, someone- many times a professional photographer- carried a camera and took pictures of the events. These lynching

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The Tuskegee Institute records the lynching of 4,742 blacks between 1882 and 1968. This is probably a small percentage of these murders, which were seldom reported, and led to the creation of the NAACP in 1909. Through all this terror and carnage, someone- many times a professional photographer- carried a camera and took pictures of the events. These lynching photographs were often made into postcards and sold as souvenirs to the crowds in attendance. Historians have also detailed the carnival atmosphere and the social ritual of a lynching, which was often announced in advance and drew thousands of people from the surrounding area. Most disturbing is the sight of the white people, looking straight at the camera as if they had nothing to be ashamed of, often smiling.

These images are some of photography's most brutal, surviving to this day so that we may now look back upon the carnage and perhaps know our history and ourselves better. The almost one hundred images reproduced here are a testament to the camera's ability to make us remember what we often choose to forget.

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Product Details

Twin Palms Publishers
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
7.82(w) x 10.42(h) x 1.26(d)

Table of Contents

Notes on the Plates165
Selected Bibliography206

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Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have to say this is truly a horrifying book, because it isn't made up or staged, there are almost 100 plates and they are real photographs from our history. and as horrifying as the pictures are, i think the plate descriptions of the circumstances are even more horrifying. this is a very important book, and one you definately should have. the other thing i have to say about this book is the cover design: it's excellent for the subject matter. a plain black cover, with a narrow strip, only slightly larger than the hanging man, set off to the right.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Seeing the exhibit in New York, I was compelled to buy this book. Reading it was even more shocking, many event had no pictures to go with it. I just can't comprehend how people can be so brutal to another. {or it was easy, because we was not consider to be human} I read this book with tears in my eyes. The most haunting parts to me was, the baby who's head was crushed, after been cut from it's mothers womb. And the little boy and his mother hanging from the bridge. (I think of my own hildren.) What distruction of human lives, what suffering, what pain, what cries. I think of the fear in their eyes, the pounding of their hearts, the tremor in their voices, the aching of their flesh, the oozing of their blood, the losing of their sight, the burning of their flesh and the jeers from the crowd. I think of all these things and wonder how parents could bring their children to witness such madness. I wonder what are in these children, and their children hearts, I sometimes wonder if they were brought up to think that same way. I have made this my personal endeavour to spread the information about this book. This have given me the energy and drive to seek out similar publication. There is a lesson to learn for every deed, whether bad or good.I hope everyone learns from this. No one should ever have to go through this again. Never.
Guest More than 1 year ago
There is nothing that can make right - a wrong done - that is unacknowledged. This book documents 4,700 (+) horrible wrongs. It takes on U. S. Dragons of injustice that breathe fire and murder for over 80 years unchecked and unchallenged. This work attempts to sing a sweeter song and battles with a sharp eye for detail/meaning. But be forewarned, the many bad men/women in this all-too human and all-too true drama - go unpunished. There is no comsic justice for the reader in the end: just cold, hard Blood-Drenched U.S. blues. Humanity in these essays and photos is covered in the muck of primitivism and blood stained forever in gore. The lives lost can not be replace. Right or wrong, the author's contend, each of us is capable of doing the same: we all shared those dark spaces, corners and edges with the predators in this work. One who views these photos will live with a bad taste in their mouths and a stink in his/her nostrils. This is exactly what the authors have had to do. They write that they will be forever haunted by the images in 'Without Sanctuary', and so shall you if you have the humanity to look, see and die a little.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the most visually devastating books of photographs I have ever seen. . . and when you read the stories behind the incidents it becomes even more powerful. Speaks out against hate and bigotry in all its forms. It's shocking to me that such violence and brutality were sanctioned and rationalized. We've come a long way but recent events in America prove that, as a nation, we still have a way to go.
Guest More than 1 year ago
'Between 1882 and 1968, an estimated 4,742 Blacks met their deaths at the hand of lynch mobs,' historian Leon F. Litwack writes. There are postcard-sizes images here that will burn your soul, taken immediatly or a short while or during the lynchings. The past becomes the present, These images don't go softly into you mind they scream their existance. They give a deeper meaning of what it is to be White or Black in America Today. The essays by a Georgia Congressman John Lewis, the historian Leon F. Litwack, and writer Hilton Als. Bring the fullness of what happen. Few white people came to trial for committing these odius crimes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This too, is America and it's shown with the honesty that slogans and happy talk try to obscure.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am more amazed at the action of those who got dressed up, packed lunch, and drove, walked and attended an event? to see strange fruit hanging from trees. The most disturbing photo I saw in this great book is the young girl with a smile on her face as she gazes up at one Black man hanging, what is she smiling about? Did her generation catch the big one? I recommend you get this book before someone with power bans it from all libraries across the nation. To actually learn people back then traded post cards announcing this from state to state is a most terrible yet valuable piece of our history. Is it any wonder why the death penalty and our prison industrial complex is so high for men of all colors now? I hope this helps you to never forget. I know it does for me to never loan the book to a friend who has yet to return it to me. stay strong and keep reading and learning from the past while you can........can't read?, then review the picture I just described and ask yourself, what do you see??
Guest More than 1 year ago
I highly recommend this book to every person black or white..The raw ugly detailed truth of how America metted out 'perfect hatred' against people of color have been hidden from us in schools and too often in the media...the truth needs to be exposed in all its hideousness to make us more aware and hopefully better human beings..This book has taken a huge step in that direction.. This was a powerful compilation of photos and factual text ;I was forever moved, angered ,& enlightened. A 'must read'
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Throughout this read, I questioned my own heart. Could I have been one of these happy spectators? I hated myself at the mere suggestion. As I read of these modern crucifixions, sobs shook me. I will be forever impacted, and yet as I look at history from the ampitheater to the holocaust and beyond, I wonder will we ever learn? We've moved on from lynching our brothers to killing the unborn, and in spite of scientific and clinical evidence that these little ones are indeed experiencing real horror and pain, have convinced ourselves that our attempts to undo our own poor decisions and lack of restraint by snuffing out a life is morally acceptable, and that granting one's self an additional choice at the expense of a weaker 'or positionally disadvantaged' human being is somehow morally superior to protecting that disadvantaged person. Killing someone simply as a matter of convenience--a punishment for a crime s/he has not committed--and then deeming it justifiable it's a sickening and insatiable bloodthirst... Who's next?
Guest More than 1 year ago
another grisly look at our 'caucasian' american history.. those murderous southerners.. easy to pick on.. easy to exploit.. easy to judge by today's standards.. after photos from the german concentration camps.. well: these are tame.. mostly only one person dead.. not thousands.. the phootographs though..in a gallery..does that mean the originals are for sale..isn't that a little like selling the cut off fingers of the victims at their murder.. maybe it's just me.. maybe i'm jaded..buy the book.. i did..