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William Bunge Memorial Lecture 2019: Ken Worpole


Where:  IAS Common Ground room G11, South Wing at University College London Gower Street WC1E 6BT

Ken Worpole : Documentary aesthetics and the human landscape

In his ground-breaking collaborative work, Fitzgerald (1971), geographer William Bunge went out of his way to praise his publisher Alfred Schenkman's 'understanding of the needs of geographers for maps and photographs and eccentric sizes and formats…(needed) to describe the human landscape as they freely see it.’ In this lecture, Ken Worpole will look at the compelling documentary aesthetic which Fitzgerald shares with other pioneering collaborations between writers and photographers, including James Agee and Walker Evans in Let Us Now Praise Famous Men (1941), and John Berger and Jean Mohr in A Fortunate Man (1967) and The Seventh Man (1975). In more recent times W.G. Sebald’s idiosyncratic use of found photographs in The Emigrants, has revived interest in the imaginative juxtaposition of text and image which, he will argue, continues to offer radical opportunities for recording and interrogating landscape, townscape and social history today.

Ken Worpole is one of our leading commentators on the changing rural and urban landscape of 21st Century Britain. He has collaborated with photographer, Jason Orton over many years including 350 Miles: an Essex journey (2011) and the recent widely acclaimed  The New English Landscape (2017) 

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