"Documentary Photographs in John L. Spivak's Odd Amalgam of Investigative Reporting and Fictional Portrayal of Chain Gangs in 1930's Georgia" - Ronald E. Ostman and Berkley Hudson

Byline: Ronald E. Ostman, Berkley Hudson; 2006-01-01; Visual Communication Quarterly; 

Report: Photographers John L. Spivak and Lewis Hine

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"At ground level, the camera's eye looks into the face of a prisoner, hogtied and on hard-packed dirt. Ropes bind his hands. Straps and ropes wrap his legs. A pickaxe shoved between his arms and the backs of his knees tightens the punishment. With discomfort, he rests his close-shorn head on the dirt. He wears torn, black-and-white convict stripes. If there was a hell on earth in 1930 and 1932, then investigative journalist John Louis Spivak depicted it with a novel based on his reporting. Using straightforward photographs to authenticate Georgia Nigger, Spivak attempted to sear into the national consciousness the brutal image of chain gangs of the American South. . ."


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