On Photography

  • by Susan Sontag
  • Narrated by Jennifer Van Dyck
  • 6 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

First published in 1973, this is a study of the force of photographic images, which are continually inserted between experience and reality. Sontag here develops further the concept of "transparency". When anything can be photographed, and photography has destroyed the boundaries and definitions of art, a viewer can approach a photograph freely, with no expectations of discovering what it means. This collection of six lucid and invigorating essays, with the most famous being "In Plato's Cave", make up a deep exploration of how the image has affected society.


What the Critics Say

"A brilliant analysis of the profound changes photographic images have made in our way of looking at the world and at ourselves over the last 140 years." (The Washington Post Book World)
"Every page of On Photography raises important and exciting questions about its subject and raises them in the best way." (The New York Times Book Review)
"On Photography is to my mind the most original and illuminating study of the subject." (Calvin Trillin, The New Yorker)


See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

I'm Glad I Bought, Despite Some Negative Reviews

What three words best describe Jennifer Van Dyck’s voice?


Any additional comments?

I was concerned that this book would be negative about photography, based on some low star review(s). However, I think Sontag simply points out the many different points of views and backgrounds that photographers express through their work. I feel like Sontag is also giving a valuable history lesson of the leading photographers as well. She seems to also have admiration where she feels it's due, towards photography and photographers. After all, she was Annie Leibovitz's partner for over a decade, encouraged and admired her photography too. I agree with Sontag about both the negative and positive impact that photography can have. I'm glad I decided to listen. A good addition to my MA in photojournalism.

Read full review

- Deb

one of the classics on photography

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

It is an easy listen and is one of the most important books on Photography

Who was your favorite character and why?

Hmm.. it is a selection of essays. The author (not a photographer) was able to write about how photography has influenced the world and been influenced

What about Jennifer Van Dyck’s performance did you like?

She has an easy voice to listen to

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Photography's influence on the world

Read full review

- Gene Bowker

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-02-2011
  • Publisher: Audible Studios