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This portrait of poverty-stricken Southern tenant farmers during the Great Depression has become one of the most influential books of the past century.
In the summer of 1936, Pulitzer Prize–winning writer James Agee and photographer Walker Evans set out on assignment for Fortune magazine to explore the daily lives of white sharecroppers in the South. Their journey would prove an extraordinary collaboration—and a watershed literary event.
Let Us Now Praise Famous Men was published to enormous critical acclaim. An unsparing record in words and pictures of this place, the people who shaped the land, and the rhythm of their lives, it would eventually be recognized by the New York Public Library as one of the most influential books of the twentieth century—and serve as an inspiration to artists from composer Aaron Copland to David Simon, creator of The Wire. With an additional sixty-four archival photos in this edition, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men remains as relevant and important as when it was first published over seventy-seven years ago.
“One of the most brutally revealing records of an America that was ignored by society—a class of people whose level of poverty left them as spiritually, mentally, and physically worn as the land on which they toiled. Time has done nothing to decrease this book’s power.” —Library Journal