21G.049 | Spring 2017 | Undergraduate

French Photography


Presentations and Sources

Week Presentation Topics / Sources
Week 3: Technologies

How to take a photograph circa 1880

How to take a photograph circa 1980

Is Digital Photography Photography?

Week 4: Capturing the World

Lumière Operators

Aerial Photography and WWI

Haffner, Jeanne. “From Enthusiasm to Expertise: Aerial Vision from Before the Airplane to the Aftermath of World War I.” In Buy at MIT Press The View from Above: The Science of Social Space. MIT Press, 2013. ISBN: 9780262018791.

Gettinger, Dan. “The Ultimate Way of Seeing: Aerial Photography in WWI.” Center for the study of the Drone at Bard College, January 28, 2014.

Taylor, Alan. “World War I in Photos: Aerial Warfare.” The Atlantic, April 27, 2014.

Satellite Photography

Gunthert, André. “Blue Marble: La terre vue de l’espace.” L’atelier des icônes, January 31, 2012.

Dorrian, Mark. “On Google Earth.” In Seeing from Above: The Aerial View in Visual Culture (2013). ISBN: 978-1780764610.

Metz, Cade. “Paired with AI and VR, Google Earth will Change the Planet.” Wired, June 29, 2015.

Week 5: Likeness & Identity

Disdéri and the Carte de Visite

McCauley, Anne. A.A.E. Disdéri & the Carte de Visite Portrait Photograph. Yale University Press, 1985. ISBN: 978-0300031690.

The Photomaton

Pellicer, Raynal. The Photobooth. Abrahms, 2011. ISBN: 978-0810996113.

Claude Cahun

Buy at MIT Press Cahun, Claude, Maya Deren, and Cindy Sherman. Inverted Odysseys. Shelley Rice, ed. MIT Press, 1999. ISBN: 9780262681063.

Don’t Kiss Me: The Art of Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore. Louise Downie, ed. Aperture / Tate, 2006. ISBN: 978-1597110259.

Week 6: Politics, Propaganda, and Protest

Photography and Nuit Debout [French]

Lennard, Natasha, and Nicholas Mirzoeff, “What Protests Look Like. The New York Times, March 2, 2017.

Rencontre: Francis Azevedo, photographe pour ‘Nuit debout.’” Inferno, May 24, 2016.

Blavignat, Yohan. “La photo iconique d’un CRS qui frappe une étudiante devient virale.” Le Figaro, April 15, 2016.

Photography and Black Lives Matter

Mirzoeff, Nicholas D. “#Blackliveslooking: How Ferguson Taught us not to Look Away.” The Conversation, August 10, 2015.

Mirzoeff, Nicholas D. “How the Jim Crow Internet is Pushing Back Against Black Lives Matter.” New Republic, September 26, 2016.

Cole, Teju. “On Photography: The Superhero Photographs of the Black Lives Matter Movement.” The New York Times Magazine, July 26, 2016.

McKnight, Matthew. “Black as We Wanna Be.” The Nation, October 10, 2016.

Sarkozy, the American [French]

Nicolas Sarkozy et les médias, l’amour haine.” France Inter, September 8, 2016.

Delporte, Christian. “Sarkozy and the Media.” Contemporary French and Francophone Studies 16, no. 3 (2012): 299–310.

Orth, Maureen. “Paris Match.” Vanity Fair, September 2008.

La Conquête. Directed by Xavier Durringer. Color, 105 min. 2011. [Optional]

Week 7: Urban Exploration (Street Photography)

Charles Marville

Kennel, Sarah.  Charles Marville: Photographer of Paris, Washington: National Gallery of Art.

Sramek, Peter. Piercing time: Paris after Marville and Atget: 1865–2012. Intellect Ltd. (1707), 2013. ISBN: 978-1783200320.

Germaine Krull

Buy at MIT Press Sichel, Kim. Germaine Krull: Photographer of Modernity. MIT Press, 1999. ISBN: 978-0262194013.

Krull, Germaine. 100 x Paris. Verlag der Reihe, 1929.

Robert Doisneau

Vestberg, Nina Lager. “Robert Doisneau and the Making of a Universal Cliché.” History of Photography 35, no. 2 (2011): 157–165.

“Robert Doisneau: Photographer Technique & Process.” C.N.P / La Sept / RIFF, 1989. [Watch on YouTube.]

Ollier, Brigitte. Doisneau Paris. Ginko Press, 1996. ISBN: 978-3927258341.

Week 8: Research and Investigation/Marking Art 

Etienne-Jules Marey

Braun, Marta. Picturing Time: The Work of Etienne-Jules Marey. University Of Chicago Press, 1995. ISBN: 978-0226071756.

In the Institute Archives:

  • Marey, La Chronophotographie 1899
  • Marey, Le Mouvement 1894
  • Marey, La Photographie du mouvement 1892

How Photography Changed Painting (Impressionism)

McNamara, Carol, et al. The Lens of Impressionism: Photography and Painting Along the Normandy Coast, 1850–1874. Lucia Marquand, 2009. ISBN: 978-1555953256.

Easton, Elizabeth W. Snapshot: Painters and Photography, Bonnard to Vuillard. Yale University Press, 2011. ISBN: 978-0300172362.

Photographer, Model, Artist: Man Ray / Lee Miller.

Prodger, Phillip. Man Ray / Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism. Merrell Publishers, 2011. ISBN: 978-1858945576.

Week 9: Tourism & Travel

Postcards of Paris

Schor, Naomi. “Cartes Postales: Representing Paris 1900.” Critical Inquiry 18, no.2 (1992): 188–244.

See instructor for more references.

Street Vendors

See instructor for references.

Week 12: Making Art II (Institutions) 

Jaques-Henri Lartigue

Moore, Kevin. Jacques Henri Lartigue: The Invention of An Artist. Princeton University Press, 2004. ISBN: 978-0691120027.

Any of the several dozen other Lartigue books.

Week 14: Photography and Law

Eugène Appert’s Commune photographs

Fineman, Mia. Faking it: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop. Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2012. ISBN: 978-0300185010.

Przyblyski, Jeannene M. “Revolution at a Standstill: Photography and the Paris Commune of 1871.”  Yale French Studies 101 (2001): 54–78.

Week 15: Spreading the News II 

Robert Capa’s “The Falling Solider”

Follow the controversy about and history of this photo starting on the Lens blog.

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2017
Learning Resource Types
Written Assignments
Image Gallery