Portraits of Community: African American Photography in Texas

by Alan B. Govenar


Published: Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1996
Details: Hardcover; 376 pages; 0.89” x 11.28” x 8.83”



From The Southern Quarterly (Spring-Summer 1999)
Although several scholars have taken photographs out of the closet and placed them on view in survey texts, they have used the imagery for the most part as a sort of visual relief from the text, and left the images to speak for themselves. However, "To Remember a Vanishing World" and "Portraits of Community" reveal that there are meanings to, and messages behind pictures that are far deeper, and more profound, than the simple black-and-white photographs of the South initially suggest. These photographs do not simply provide a visual record, but actually in some cases make, and in other instances mold, history. We carry around in our minds pictures of region, race, gender, and class long after the people and places have passed from the scene and the words used to describe them have been forgotten.
Robert E. Snyder