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Alaska Images of the Country Hardcover – June 12, 1982
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is structured around John McPhee's book "Coming into the Country". In that book McPhee gives an insightful description of Alaska as a place, and its inhabitants. The Alaskans seem torn between preserving the wilderness and developing it and the extracts contained in this volume capture that spirit. For example, McPhee provides admiring character studies of a number of people who came to Alaska because they just didn't fit in back in the lower 48 states. Even his descriptions of travels in the wilderness have an overlay of the politics of the state, where the federal government, which once owned most of the land, is distrusted by most citizens.
Rowell decided that he wanted to take McPhee's writing and illustrate it with his own pictures. The preface makes clear that McPhee didn't offer a lot of cooperation. In fact he warned Rowell not to overprint his verbal pictures with Rowell's. The text selection was made by Rowell and the pictures included are not directly related to the words but have a close connection to their spirit.
As I noted, this is not any ordinary Rowell book (if there is such a thing). There are far more pictures of human beings and their artifacts then one usually finds in such a book, and I sometimes felt that the pictures were gritty and dark. At first I thought that this was a shortcoming of the photographs but then I realized that Rowell had specifically selected these pictures because he believed that they reflected the spirit of McPhee's words.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
She has enjoyed a couple of trips to Alaska and absolutely loved the images. She want's to go back now!Published on March 9, 2014 by Billy
This is a good collection of Alaska images. Well presented. Makes a nice coffee table reader for guests to our house.Published on January 11, 2014 by chuck8700