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on 28 October 2017
an oldish book but shows a history of photographt.
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on 28 December 2015
Very helpful book for the first year of my photography degree.
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on 28 April 2016
Excellent read and so useful during my uni studies.
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on 19 May 2016
This became a valuable book during my Photography degree. I definitely recommend it to anyone studying photography or interested in the key aspects of the history of photography.
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on 28 May 2010
As the title says really; this book is essential reading for Photography students at any level, or for those whose are looking to expand & investigate further their photographic practice. Covering photgraphy from it's inception to modern contemporary practitioners, Clarke dissects the medium & clearly explains the concepts, intention & methodologies using masters of the art, including Barthes, Sontag,as well as coving all the genres. A must read !!!
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on 10 January 2014
we used it for my first years course book that my photography course was basically based on for the first year. very informative and goes into the basics of photography theory in a great depth. if you are interested in the theory behind photography then graham clarke's the photograph is worth reading.
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on 13 October 2015
need to get back later
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on 22 April 2014
This book gives a thorough induction into photography as a major cultural force. It clearly and logically drives awareness of factors to be considered when reading, de- constructing and understanding photographic images.
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on 9 August 2010
I've used this relatively small book now for two years as an aid to study and it's been invaluable.

This book is not a guide on how to take photographs but an academic and theoretical look at how photographs work and what they can mean to us, and how these meanings come about. When I started reading this book I had no clue about art at all (still don't ;) )and this book definitely requires a certain level of knowledge around the subjects and debates to get the full gist of what's going on. However, that's not to say it's inaccessible and if anything the book did double duty for me because it highlighted my areas of ignorance.

The information is presented in a series of essays which highlight the photograph's relationship with various subjects, some analogous to genres, be it The City, Portraits, Art etc. Each essay is a very well informed and well considered look at how photographs function in those genres by bringing to the fore the main debates.

Illustrations are present throughout; there are not hundreds but the ones there are are commented on insightfully and with full relevance to the rest of the text.

As my knowledge grows in other areas grows I've found myself returning to this book over and over and re-reading chapters where relevant. I've always been able to further enhance my understanding by returning to this book. Every time I read a chapter another piece of the the overall puzzle falls into place or a perspective I've forgotten is mentioned thus giving a different interpretation on the area I'm researching.

All in all a very informative book full of useful information without being too dry.
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on 22 February 2011
For those who have a deeper interest in the medium of photography Graham Clarke's book is a great place to start. It follows a linear path and covers Fox Talbot up to contemporary photographers. The easy to read style and non-condescending manor make it an essential companion for those who are looking to explore the side theoretical of photography. Important images are discussed with a syntax and vocabulary that encourage learning rather than being a barrier. It is a valid stepping stone before moving onto more weightier contributors like Barthes or Sontag.
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