1st July – 4th July 2013
Twice I’ve started to read this book and twice I’ve failed to finish it. Twice I’ve started to listen to the audio version of the book and on this second attempt I’ve decided to review each of the six essays individually in the hope that I’ll get through them all and at last have a full review of what is supposed to be a very seminal work on the subject of photography. I have to be honest and say that during the first attempt at the audio book I fell asleep during the second essay, which remains in my mind, at this moment of just having finished the first essay for the second time, as being entirely about Diane Arbus, but funnily enough I remember more about that second essay than the first through which I was awake the entire time!
To say I found it a difficult book is an understatement, not the language, that’s quite straightforward, it’s the way that Sontag wanders all over the place seemingly to make her point more valid, but in fact making it more obscure if you’re not used to such prose. I’m glad I stuck with it and reviewed it step by step because at the end of it all I’ve come away with a deep appreciation of the arguments she makes and certainly a better understanding of the role and position of photography in art.