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With Signs Following: Photographs from the Southern Religious Roadside Hardcover – August 17, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

This drive-by testimony to southern evangelical wit and wisdom

- Examines religious roadside signage in the South and its reliance on methods of modern advertising

- Records actual words and stories of participants in the culture of roadside religious expression in the South

- Includes many striking and thought-provoking photographs

From the Inside Flap

A drive-by testimony to southern evangelical wit and wisdom

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 67 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Mississippi (August 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578069750
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578069750
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 8.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,527,390 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Peterson TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a collection of 66 black-and-white photographs of religious or evangelical roadside signs and symbols from the South, taken by Joe York between 2001 and 2005. The signs vary from the simple ("REPENT" on a cardboard sign nailed to a telephone pole along a dirt driveway), to the slick ("He Died For You" in lights, much like a stadium electronic scoreboard, in front of a Baptist Church), to the impromptu ("JESUS SAVES ALL" scrawled in the dirt covering the back end of a tractor-trailer traveling down a highway), to the spooky (an abandoned clothes dryer on which are painted the words,"No Ice Water in Hell. Fire. Hot, Hot, Hot. Repent"). The photographs are much more documentary in nature than aesthetic.

Supplementing the photographs are a brief introduction by Charles Reagan Wilson and a twelve-page foreword by the photographer. In it, York makes the argument that these signs are not so much folk art as conscious marketing of God, employing modern advertising techniques. Support for his argument is supplied by the pastor of a church in Gadsden, Alabama who explained the church's widespread and complicated billboard campaign, built around the catch-phrase: "No Gimmicks, Just Jesus". The pastor added: "You know, it's a little unsettling for the Christian community to realize it, but we are marketing a product just like everybody else. Our product has changed lives. Our product is Jesus."

I bought the book after noticing for myself during a recent car-trip through the South a wide array of religious signs and images, including a number of installations of three tall metal crosses along roadways.
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With Signs Following: Photographs from the Southern Religious Roadside
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