Margaret Bourke Whites: A Photograph Analysis

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The famous photograph “At the Time of the Louisville Flood” was taken by Margaret Bourke White in Louisville,Kentucky during the Great Depression and, was later published to “Life” magazine. In 1937, Louisville had a severe flood that deposited 19″ of rain on the city, leaving majority of it underwater. The photo was very popular to its time period because of the way life was during the Great Depression. The photograph illustrates the long, crowded breadlines during the Depression. The picture also depicts the breadline on a cold winter day, in which many people were wearing heavy jackets to keep warm. Also this picture portrays the irony of America’s collapse. Not long ago the Americans were celebrating the luxurious lifestyle of the Roaring Twenties; yet, by the time of the depression, Americans didn't have the money or the convenience to enjoy their freedom and the good life. Visually analyzing Margaret Bourke Whites’…show more content…
Majority of the picture is the huge billboard in the background. The huge billboard illustrates irony. The billboard seems to look like a happy white family of four cruising around in the car. In addition to the time period and the flood, the white family on the billboard seems to remain unaffected and seems like nothing happened while the other people at the bottom of the picture strive to live to the standards. The billboard reads “World’s highest standard of living” and “There’s no way like the American way.” If you look towards the bottom of the billboard you will notice the the African Americans lineup in-front of the billboard. I think the irony in the picture is that the billboard clearly says that the American’s way of life is “Worlds highest standard of living,” but directly below is African Americans lined up in the cold to get food. I think this picture has two sides to it the billboard represents dreams, and the African American line represents

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