Arthur Rothstein


These three images are also good comparisons to Evans. The image on the left, shows a farmer and son talking with a government agent. It is another example of the success of FSA relief programs--it shows that there is actual face to face communication with the poor farmers. They stand in front of a field, and perhaps it is this very field that they are discucussing--how to improve the soil, etc... Also, by including the son in the image, there is a suggestion of growth. The boy will one day be a man, and with his father as an example, and the FSA agent as a guide, he will reap the benefits of the modernization of agriculture. The father keeps one hand on the little boy, as if to show his love and consideration for the boy's future.

Aesthetically this photograph is very plain, yet it does acheive the purpose of documenting the benevolent interaction of FSA agents with poor farmers. It is a good "document"type of photograph, for it is evidence that (at least) communication between the FSA and the poor is on a personal level.

I have included the two photographs to the right to show another example of the photographer posing the subjects. These appear to be unposed images. However, that is not the case.

Rothstein is trying to show his subjects struggling against the harsh winds and dust, that has ruined the plains of the midwest, and therefore has asked them to lean forward. In the middle image, though, the concept of struggling through the wind and dust, but moving away from the shelter(the house), does not make sense. Thus, he realized that posing his subjects in front of a shack--that cannot even serve as a shelter, for the door has been blocked by accumulating dust--including two young children to increase the sympathetic response from the viewer, would make a much more powerful image. It does.

Rothstein said:
	The repetition of a scene before a different background
	with some changes of movement will sometimes result in a more
	effective picture.

So, here again, we see the editing, and creative process of the photographer evident in the photograph. "Fleeing a Dust Storm"(at right), was another hallmark image of the FSA. People believed it. However, we see that Rothstein staged it, and even admitting to staging it. This image was not so much a "future-oriented" one; it was more of an "exageration of sufferring"--completely manipulated by Rothstein to appear as such.

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