Apr 142015
 

marycoinmedOn the surface this is a fictionalized account of two women who made one another famous during The Great Depression: Dorothea Lange, a government employed photographer, and Florence Owens Thompson, the subject of what may be the most famous photo of the era, Migrant Mother.  Using available historical information (I know because I checked), Marissa Coin, the author weaves together the lives of these two women and brings to life the endurance of strong women getting by during extraordinary times.  Underlying the narrative is a discussion of the nature of history and photography.  History being a series of perhaps unreliable and haphazardly preserved recollections interpreted by future observers and photographs turning out to be exactly the same.  Pictures are no more than the preservation of a second in time that might or might not reflect reality and whose interpretation relies as much on the viewer as it does the photographer or the subject.

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