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The Photos of the Century: 100 Historic Moments (Evergreen) (French Edition) (French) Hardcover – October 1, 1999
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Marie-Monique Robin went to great lengths to track down sources, she sifted through volumes of historical photographs and she did an extraordinary job of organizing the material.
This outstanding journalist made the best choice of words, as well. Besides the briefest of introductions, she augmented each photograph with narrative in three short sections: A paragraph of historical context entitled "Timeline"; a concise description of the image; and a few words from the photographer or other person closely associated with the photo.
Glancing through the pages one can appreciate the easy and pleasurable arrangement of the photos and text. Each photo and accompanied text are placed on large, well balanced, two-page spreads. There are one hundred of these, starting with a 1898 photo of the Turin Shroud and ending with a 1997 "mosaic of pixels" of the Mars Pathfinder.
The collection is one hundred photos short, but very rich. From Texas to South Africa, ayatollahs to lesbian lovers and from Buchenwald to the Moon, the photographs are beautiful, moving, telling, compelling and all the superlatives one associates with the rarest moments of photojournalism. There is a combination of history and poetry in images of people, places and events that we all recognize, and also those that we do not but want to. They convey the things that please, annoy, educate, repulse and move us, so, they make a superb pictorial account of twentieth century history.
One can see the author's own aesthetic sensitivity in the layout of the book and in her choice of large-format black and white photos in combination with small color photos of photographers or other relevant images. While avoiding the Technicolor look of glossy magazines, she succeeds in presenting a subdued phantasmagoria that moves and informs her audience.