Meg A. Theno

Publication Date


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First Advisor

Hamilton, Hallie J.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Journalism


Photojournalism--History; Documentary photography--History


The impact of documentary photography on photojournalism has been an ongoing process since photography's first introduction in 1839. This historical study follows the association between documentary photography and photojournalism from 1839 to present. Chapter 1 discusses and defines the issue of documentary photography and identifies it as an underlying force in the development of photojournalism. Chapter 2 is an examination of the development of the photograph as a document and covers the period of the 1800's. It describes the early years of portraiture, of landscape and survey photography, of war photography, and goes into detail on documentary photography's first use as a tool for social change. The turn of the century was a critical period of aesthetic development for photography and for photographers. Chapter 3 presents the arguments surrounding "Pictorialism" and "Realism" and takes a look at the individuals who brought photography into the Twentieth Century. Chapter 4 covers the 1930's and 1940's. It discusses the Farm Security Administration project, the photography of World War II, the birth of the photo magazines, and the post-war effort to keep documentary photography alive. The 1950's and 1960's are commonly regarded as being the formulative years of modern documentary photojournalism. Chapter 5 elaborates on the aesthetic conditions of this era and highlights the individuals who played key roles. The maturation of documentary photography and modern photojournalism is discussed in Chapters 6 and 7. Also part of these chapters are observations on current trends and comments on future possibilities.


Bibliography: pages [151]-156.


vi, 156 pages




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