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An American Exodus by Dorothea Lange and Paul S. Taylor, First Edition

SKU: aexodus

An American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion by Dorothea Lange and Paul S. Taylor


First Edition, First Printing, 1939


This is a first edition, first printing of the classic photobook, “An American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion” published by Reynal & Hitchcock, New York in 1939. “An American Exodus” is a documentation, in photographs and text, of the mass migrations of the 1930's caused by changes within the regionally varied agricultural traditions throughout the country. Commenting in the book, “The Book of 101 Books: Seminal Photographic Books of the Twentieth Century”, Andrew Roth states, "Like John Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath, also published in 1939, An American Exodus makes no secret of its populist sympathies; Lange and Taylor's 'observations in the field' are always put to persuasively dramatic effect. The book's photos, taken under the auspices of Roy Stryker's FSA photo project (and supplemented by several news photos, and images by Arthur Rothstein, Horace Bristol and Ron Partridge), are arranged in a rambling but never unequivocal narrative, usually in striking juxtaposition." In “The Photobook: A History”, Parr and Badger write, “"This is the most balanced of New Deal documentary books, and therefore a model for the genre. Not only does it have the closest integration of text and image, but the whole book was compiled with scrupulous attention to the presentation of facts, without either hyperbole or undue rhetoric. Taylor notes the evidence, piling up the grim facts and figures. Lange compiles the visual indictment with a great deal of artistry. That is to say, her pictures are as direct as those of Walker Evans, though without his studied disinterest. Lange was warmer and more humane, displaying an overt empathy that, importantly, could be transmitted to the public."


Containing 112 striking photographs, the book measures approximately 10” x 8” and is bound in blue cloth covered boards in a photographically illustrated dust jacket.   The condition of the book is Very Good with some foxing to several pages not affecting the photographs. The dust jacket is not price clipped and is in Good condition with some chips and stains as well as some loss to the head and hell of the spine as well as to the edge tips.


Cited in all three reference books on photobooks: “The Book of 101 Books: Seminal Photographic Books of the Twentieth Century” by Andrew Roth and “The Photobook: A History”, by Parr and Badger, and “The Open Book” by Andrew Roth.


Photographs of the dust jacket faults as well as photographs contained in the book appear below. Please note that although the photographs appear digitized as thumbnails, they are viewable in the photo viewer by clicking your mouse on the thumbnail.


PRICE:  $1,195.00
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Franklin Books Guide to Condition Descriptions

We realize that buying books online is difficult because you don't have the luxury of actually seeing the book before you make your decision. At Franklin Books, we strive to make your purchases as risk-free as possible. We follow four basic rules:

  1. We grade our books conservatively;
  2. We describe our books as extensively and accurately as possible;
  3. We pack our books tightly and securely for shipping.
  4. If you feel a book does not match our description, it is returnable for a full refund.

The following are the terms used to describe our books:

Mint - As New: The book is in the same immaculate condition as when it was published and most likely will be in the original publisher's shipping box or shrink wrap.

Fine: Normally, our highest rating. A Fine book approaches the condition of As New. Any superficial/minor fault will always be noted.

Near Fine: A book approaching FINE with minor defects which will always be noted.

Very Good: A book that shows some signs of wear on either the binding or paper. The defects will always be noted.

Good: Describes the average used worn book that has all pages or leaves present. All defects will be noted. We rarely ever list a book in Good condition unless it is of sufficient rarity to be the best available on the market.

Fair/Poor: Describes a book that has major flaws. This copy may be soiled, scuffed, stained or spotted and may have loose joints, hinges or pages. We do not sell books that are in Fair/Poor condition.

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