Work

The World in Photographs

By Ferdinand Protzman
(National Geographic Society, Hardcover, 9780792262046, 349pp.)

Publication Date: August 29, 2006

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Description

Culled from National Geographic's vast photographic archive as well as other important collections, this fascinating, wide-ranging volume presents a wonderfully varied group portrait of people at work—in great cities and tiny villages; in 19th-century China and 21st-century New York; in fields, factories, food carts, four-star restaurants, and just about everywhere else we earn our keep. We see cowboys and clowns, dancers and dog groomers, miners and models. On one page, drill sergeants bark orders to U.S. Navy recruits; on another, young Tibetan monks study Buddhist scriptures; and on another, Kenyan women spread coffee beans to dry.

Work is a subject that is both worldwide and personal. It is a shared endeavor at the very core of our identity. From the glamour of a Parisian fashion show to the grit of an African diamond mine, there are countless ways to make a living. The book illuminates scores of them—many in never-before-published photographs—offering revealing glimpses into various eras and cultures and engaging the reader with entertaining text and informative captions.

With a wonderful mix of the utterly unexpected and the instantly familiar, this vivid panorama takes an essential human activity and shows us myriad ways in which work is at once universal and delightfully, unforgettably unique.




About the Author
Ferdinand Protzman, an award-winning cultural writer and critic, is the author of Landscape: Photographs of Time and Place (National Geographic 2003). His reviews, essays, and articles have appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the International Herald Tribune, ARTnews, the Harvard Review, Forward, and Zeit-Magazin. Protzman wrote the afterword in Arion Press's limited edition of The Voices of Marrakesh, by Nobel Prizewinner Elias Canetti (2001). He lives in Kensington, Maryland, with his family.
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