New! A Visual and Textual Narrative of Alabama’s Photographic History

Shot in Alabama by Frances Osborn Robb is a visual and textual narrative of Alabama’s photographic history from 1839 to 1941. It describes the phenomenon of photography as practiced in Alabama as a major cultural force, paying close attention to the particular contexts from which each image emerges and the fragments of microhistory that each image documents.

Presented chronologically—from the very first photograph ever taken in the state to the appearance of cameras as commonplace possessions in mid-twentieth-century households—Robb draws into sharp relief the eras of daguerreotypes, Civil War photography, photographic portraiture at the end of the nineteenth century, urban and rural photography in the early twentieth century, WPA photography during the Great Depression, postcards and tourist photography, pre-World War II illustrated books and art photographs, and portraits depicting soldiers and the home front. Robb also examines a wide spectrum of vernacular photography: Alabama-made photographs of everyday people and places, the photographs that fill dresser drawers and shoeboxes, a vast array of unusual images against which Alabama’s more typical iconography can be measured.

She also chronicles the work of hundreds of photographers–black and white, amateur and professional, women and men—some little-known outside their communities, some of them the medium’s most important practitioners. “Who Shot Alabama?” is an accompanying appendix that includes 1,400 photographers by name, working dates, and location–a resource that will help countless individuals, families, and archives identify the specific Alabama photographers whose names appear on family photographs or those in institutional collections.

Shot in Alabama is an insightful document of photography as both a communicator and creator of social, cultural, economic, and visual history. It highlights the very personal worlds rendered by individual photographs as well as the larger panorama of Alabama history as seen through the photographs collectively.

A landmark work of research, curation, and scholarship, it fills the void of published history on Alabama photography and is an invaluable resource for historians, archivists, librarians, collectors, hobbyists, and readers with an interest in Alabama history or historic photography. Shot in Alabama is a book that all Alabamians will want on their coffee tables.

Huntsville resident Frances Osborn Robb has spent twenty-five years researching Alabama photographers and photographs while serving as a consultant on the state’s cultural history and historic photography for museums, archives, and libraries. She has curated or advised on many exhibitions, including Made in Alabama: A State Legacy and the award-winning In View of Home: Alabama Landscape Photographs. In her search for information and images, she has visited every county in Alabama and roamed as far as Maine and California to study photographs in institutional repositories and family collections.

Shot in Alabama is an extraordinary, first-rate overview of photography in this state, from the introduction of daguerreotypes in 1839 to the beginning of US involvement in World War II, which Robb explains was itself a watershed in Alabama photography.”
—Martin T. Olliff, editor of The Great War in the Heart of Dixie: Alabama during World War I

“Frances Robb has always had a meticulous and discerning eye when it comes to looking at photographs. We photographers value this eye in helping us understand the patterns and nuances of our images. Now everyone can have access to Robb’s marvelous eye within the pages of Shot in Alabama, a first-ever compilation of the evolving, hundred-year span of photography in Alabama. These vernacular images have subtle power equal to that of many of the better-known iconic images of Alabama. This is a stunning collection of images that show how the people of Alabama lived and evolved during their formation as a state and into the early years of World War II. It is beautiful and haunting and at the same time gives new life to a time now past.”
—Chip Cooper, coauthor and cophotographer of Old Havana: Spirit of the Living City and Campesinos: Inside the Soul of Cuba

592 pages / 1 color figure / 153 duotone figures / 2 maps
ISBN: 978-0-8173-1878-9 Cloth
ISBN: 978-0-8173-8878-2 Ebook

New in Our Rhetoric, Culture, and Social Critique Series

James Wynn’s timely investigation highlights scientific studies grounded in publicly gathered data and probes the rhetoric these studies employ. Many of these endeavors, such as the widely used SETI@home project, simply draw on the processing power of participants’ home computers; others, like the protein-folding game Foldit, ask users to take a more active role in solving scientific problems. In Citizen Science in the Digital Age: Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement, Wynn analyzes the discourse that enables these scientific ventures, as well as the difficulties that arise in communication between scientists and lay people and the potential for misuse of publicly gathered data.

Wynn puzzles out the intricacies of these exciting new research developments by focusing on various case studies. He explores the Safecast project, which originated from crowd-sourced mapping for Fukushima radiation dispersal, arguing that evolving technologies enable public volunteers to make concrete, sound, science-based arguments. Additionally, he considers the potential use of citizen science as a method of increasing the public’s identification with the scientific community, and contemplates how more collaborative rhetoric might deepen these opportunities for interaction and alignment. Furthermore, he examines ways in which the lived experience of volunteers may be integrated with expert scientific knowledge, and also how this same personal involvement can be used to further policy agendas.

Precious few texts explore the intersection of rhetoric, science, and the Internet. Citizen Science in the Digital Age fills this gap, offering a clear, intelligent overview of the topic intended for rhetoric and communication scholars as well as practitioners and administrators in a number of science-based disciplines. With the expanded availability of once inaccessible technologies and computing power, the practice of citizen science will only continue to grow. This study offers insight into how–given prudent application and the clear articulation of common goals–citizen science might strengthen the relationships between scientists and laypeople.

James Wynn
is an associate professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University and the author of Evolution by Numbers: The Origins of Mathematical Argument in Biology.

Citizen Science in the Digital Age addresses issues created by the intersection of the citizen science movement and the new technologies of the Internet. It is timely, important, and right in line with the renewed interest in the relations between science and its publics.”
—Carolyn R. Miller, SAS Institute Distinguished Professor Emerita of Rhetoric and Technical Communication at North Carolina State University

“Wynn’s approach to citizen science hits a sweet spot between sociological and rhetorical studies of science, and pushes the boundaries in several respects. Citizen Science in the Digital Age usefully invites connections to diverse strands of work in the area.”
—John Lyne, professor of communication and resident fellow at the Center for the Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh 

Rhetoric, Culture, and Social Critique
John Louis Lucaites, series editor

224 pages / 11 B&W figures
ISBN: 978-0-8173-1943-4 Cloth
ISBN: 978-0-8173-9086-0 Ebook

New in Our American Writers Remembered Series

Eugene O’Neill Remembered offers new views into the playwright’s life by capturing the direct memories of those who were close to him through interviews, memoirs, and other recollections. These sixty-two remembrances create an unprecedented image of O’Neill.

Known principally as the author of some of the most significant plays in the American dramatic canon and as one of America’s Nobel Laureates in literature, O’Neill rarely gave interviews and offered few details about himself. As a consequence, his life has long been shrouded in myth. He also abetted some of the misconceptions about his youth by, for example, advocating the story that he was expelled from Princeton for throwing a rock through Woodrow Wilson’s window or by exaggerating the amount of time he had spent at sea. The legend of the hard-drinking, tormented playwright with a grim view of life was further reinforced when Long Day’s Journey into Night was produced in 1956, three years after his death instead of the twenty-five years he had insisted on.

The portrayal of O’Neill as a tragic figure has been solidified in a number of biographies. The purpose of this collection, however, is to present O’Neill as others saw him and described him in their first-person accounts. In the course of these reminiscences, many of the vast and various narrators conflict with and contradict each other. Unlike other accounts of O’Neill’s life, much of the focus is on impressions instead of facts. The result is a revealing composite portrait of a key figure in twentieth-century American literary history.

Brenda Murphy is a professor emerita of English at the University of Connecticut and the author of numerous books on twentieth-century American literature and drama, including The Provincetown Players and the Culture of Modernity and The Theatre of Tennessee Williams.

George Monteiro is a professor emeritus of English and an adjunct professor emeritus of Portuguese and Brazilian studies at Brown University. His books include Stephen Crane’s Blue Badge of Courage and Elizabeth Bishop in Brazil and After: A Poetic Career Transformed.

Eugene O’Neill Remembered is a cabinet of curiosity for diverse, fragmentary evocations left by a noisy writer and a difficult man who self-consciously made literary and theatrical history in the first part of the twentieth century.”
—William Davies King, author of Another Part of a Long Story: Literary Traces of Eugene O’Neill and Agnes Boulton

“Murphy and Monteiro’s exemplary compilation will be greeted with cheers from those of us interested in gaining new access to the playwright’s elusive personality and the nature of his closest associations.”
—Robert M. Dowling, author of Eugene O’Neill: A Life in Four Acts

American Writers Remembered
Jackson R. Bryer, series editor

400 pages / 17 B&W figures
ISBN: 978-0-8173-1931-1 Cloth
ISBN: 978-0-8173-9064-8 Ebook