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1 Beaverton Sociology- American Studies

Let Us Now Praise Famous Men: Three Tenant Families

by and

Let Us Now Praise Famous Men: Three Tenant Families Cover

ISBN13: 9780618127498
ISBN10: 0618127496
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A landmark work of American photojournalism “renowned for its fusion of social conscience and artistic radicality” (New York Times).

In the summer of 1936, James Agee and Walker Evans set out on assignment for Fortune magazine to explore the daily lives of sharecroppers in the South. Their journey would prove an extraordinary collaboration and a watershed literary event when, in 1941, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men was first published to enormous critical acclaim. This unsparing record of place, of the people who shaped the land and the rhythm of their lives, is intensely moving and unrelentingly honest, and today — recognized by the New York Public Library as one of the most influential books of the twentieth century — it stands as a poetic tract of its time. With an elegant new design as well as a sixty-four-page photographic prologue featuring archival reproductions of Evans's classic images, this historic edition offers readers a window into a remarkable slice of American history.


Agee's colleague at Time in the 1940s, John Hersey, writes a major evaluation of Agee's work and the Agee legend in a new introduction to this literary classic. 64 pages of photos.

About the Author

James Agee (1909-1955) was a poet, screenwriter, and journalist who won the Pulitzer Prize for his novel A Death in the Family. Walker Evans (1903-1976) is best known for his striking Depression-era photographs. Born in St. Louis, he began his photographic career at twenty-five. He served as an editor for both Fortune and Time and was a professor of graphic arts at Yale. His other books include American Photographs and Message from the Interior.

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lukas, December 9, 2013 (view all comments by lukas)
James Agee didn't see 50, but wrote a few celebrated and influential works on which his reputation rests: "A Death in the Family," the screenplay for "The African Queen" and this non-fiction book. In 1936, he and photographer Walker Evans (his photos preface the book) went to the South to report on tenant families and this was the result. In its fusion of Agee's idiosyncratic and spirited voice and reportage it forecasts the New Journalists, as well as the Beats. You won't learn much about the farmers, who remain ciphers, but you'll learn a lot about Agee. His self-involved, turgid and seemingly unedited prose (drawing from Faulkner and Wolfe) overwhelms the grim subject matter, rather than offering any insights or sympathy. Here's the most obnoxious sentence: "I could not with any of them that they should have had the 'advantages' I have had: a Harvard education is by no means an unqualified advantage." Yeah, it's really tough going to Harvard and God forbid any of these farmers get a world class education. Jerk.
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Product Details

Evans, Walker
Hersey, John
Foreword by:
Evans, Walker
Evans, Walker
Agee, James
Evans, Walker
Mariner Books
United States - 20th Century
United States - State & Local
Social history
Farm tenancy
United States - State & Local - General
Agee, James - Journeys - Alabama
Farm tenancy -- Alabama -- History.
US History - 20th Century
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
August 2001
Grade Level:
9.04x6.36x1.26 in. 1.60 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » Americana » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » American Studies
History and Social Science » Sociology » Poverty
History and Social Science » US History » 20th Century » General

Let Us Now Praise Famous Men: Three Tenant Families Used Trade Paper
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Product details 432 pages Mariner Books - English 9780618127498 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Agee's colleague at Time in the 1940s, John Hersey, writes a major evaluation of Agee's work and the Agee legend in a new introduction to this literary classic. 64 pages of photos.
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