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Faces of Africa: Thirty Years of Photography (National Geographic Collectors Series) Hardcover – January 6, 2009

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Faces of Africa: Thirty Years of Photography (National Geographic Collectors Series) + Natural Fashion: Tribal Decoration from Africa + African Ceremonies: The Concise Edition
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I was first riveted by their portraits of African women at a small gallery in London. Their photographs had such a powerful effect that I was driven to leave home and family to come and see it for myself." — Africa News

About the Author

Carol Beckwith has been cited by United Press International as "foremost among photographers who have recorded the cultures of Africa." She is the author of Masai, Nomads of Niger, and African Ark.

Angela Fisher is the author of the internationally acclaimed Africa Adorned, and African Ark, co-authored with Beckwith.
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Product Details

  • Series: National Geographic Collectors Series
  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: National Geographic; illustrated edition edition (January 6, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1426204248
  • ISBN-13: 978-1426204241
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #236,453 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 45 people found the following review helpful By M.A. on December 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When ordering this book, make sure to check the dimensions or ISBN, or you may inadvertently order a smaller edition. The fact that there are two different ones is not noted anywhere that I can see. I'm not sure why one would want such gorgeous photos in such a limitingly small size - perhaps to fit pygmy coffee tables? In any case:

The larger edition is 9 x 8.9 x 1.1"
ISBN-10: 079226830X
ISBN-13: 978-0792268307

The smaller edition is 6.6 x 6.1 x 1.2"
ISBN-10: 1426204248
ISBN-13: 978-1426204241

That said - I've been a fan of Beckwith and Fisher's work for a long time. This volume is a beauty, and I do wish all their previous works were still in print to go along with it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By nunu on January 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have to give this book 5 stars but I have other books of these photographers and many of the pictures are repeated over and over again in all their books.
Buyer beware of that, you may only need to purchase 1 or 2 of their books.
Fortunately, I bought this book for my artist brother-in- law, who enjoyed all the different, beautiful looks of Africa. that alone gets high ratings.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Yuliya Zabiyaka on May 7, 2015
Format: Hardcover
"Recording the Past, Supporting the Future", while Ruining the Present. Please do not buy this book. These two photographers are extremely unethical. I've seen them work during a festival in Burkina Faso and it was a disgrace for Western civilization. The aura of absolute entitlement was around Bekwith&Fisher during the multi-day festival as they stood/sat within less than a foot of the performers, covering the performance from all the locals (of which there were thousands and who were much further from the performance at the places designated for spectators). This was equivalent of someone climbing on the stage of the theater performance and standing right in front of the actors the whole duration of the performance. I talked to the organizers and they were upset with such behavior, but their hospitality didn't allow them to ask these women to be respectful. The cost of you being able to see moments of foreign culture are pretty steep here. The cost is ruining the same moments (except that they mean a lot more) for the people of that culture.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By shay on November 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I absolutely loved looking at the images in this book. I've become inspired by the creativity and colors the garments worn, the shapes of the jewelry and the pattern of the body paint. Everything was so unique and personal to the people in the picture. The faces of the children, men and women as they engages in special ceremonies and daily activities. The words used to describe the pictures made me feel as if I was there interacting with the people.
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Format: Hardcover
If you have a passion for photography, and Africa.. this book is a must have.
It is a piece of art.. one that you would like to keep and to show to your friends and family. It would make a great gift too. The writers' & photographers' passion for Africa, its culture and values make the book more precious and interesting to read. I like the unique combination of photos and words.. it gives you all the information you need to know about a culture that is so different and unique. The photos are of high quality, the colors are so vivid, and they make everything more beautiful and real.

The book is deep, the words used are so inspiring.. and I like the way it is divided into sections (on becoming, sense of place& strength of being, art of seduction, joy of being, touching, inner journeys, shaped by the earth & empowered by nature, patterns of beauty, cradle of creativity, rhythm from within, pulse of an ancient land, capacity of endure, wisdom of age, returning to the ancestors)

I wrote down some of the most inspiring words written in this book.. they are quoted below:

- 'It took 30 years and traveling more than 270,000 miles, through remote corners of 36 countries, and to more than 150 African cultures to make the photographs presented here.'

- 'From Africa we have learned the value of rites of passage, which define what is required of a person at each stage of life. We have been touched by the wisdom of elders and inspired by belief systems that keep people in harmony with their natural environment, their spirituality, and their communities.'

- 'In Africa the place of every man, woman, and child is defined within the framework of the extended family, age grade, ethnic group, and nation.
Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. S. levinson on February 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought the book after I saw the work of the two photographers in the show No Stranger. This book is diappointing and unimpressive: small photos (I know, I should have noticed the small size of the book...). I'm just glad it wasn't expensive.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ittybitty on March 21, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I didn't pay attention to product size. I bought this intended for a gift, but it's too small. I wasn't super impressed with the photography. I decided to return it and get A Shadow Falls by Nick Brandt instead
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was happy with the book...the recipient of my gift said it seemed the pictures were of "extremes"..that there are many "faces" that would have been good to include that weren't so decorated... but, she also said she loved the book & had seen many of the "faces" in her travels.
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