Ken Light

Delta Time: Mississippi Photographs by Ken LIght

Robert Moses, fwd.

Smithsonian Institution Press (Washington and London)
Smithsonian Institution Press Catalog
Paperback (1995); cloth (1995), 126 pp.
ISBN 1-56098-470-8 (cloth)
ISBN 1-56098-469-4 (paperback)


This is a photographic journey through the poorest communities of the Mississippi Delta. Though the scenes appear to be decades old, possibly Farm Security Administration images from the Depression era, they were shot in the late 1980s and early 1990s. With a passion for detail and compassion for his subjects, documentary photographer Ken Light has captured in more than 100 duotone images the legacy of sharecropping, racism, and poverty in the Deep South--a land where time has brought little change.

A foreword by the legendary civil rights activist Robert Moses recalls the struggle Mississippi blacks waged on behalf of freedom during the 1960s. In his afterward, Ken Light reflects on his Delta photography and the struggle of the present. "Every day brings a new vision and new dismay in witnessing the lives of Delta people," he writes. "These contrasting and dramatic forces create an overwhelming picture in the mind's eye, and an opportunity and responsibility."

Ken Light is a social documentary photographer whose work has appeared in books, magazines, and more than one hundred international exhibitions. He is on the faculty of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, and is the author of three other books, including To the Promised Land (1988) and With These Hands (1986).

(adapted from book jacket)