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"Photos of the school group of this place and others" : an itinerant photographer pictures rural education in Nova Scotia, c1912

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"Photos of the school group of this place and others" : an itinerant photographer pictures rural education in Nova Scotia, c1912

Spike, Sara (2009) "Photos of the school group of this place and others" : an itinerant photographer pictures rural education in Nova Scotia, c1912. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

In June 1912, itinerant photographer Frank Adams travelled northeast through central Nova Scotia, making class portraits at the small rural schools along his way. The resulting photographs and other like them are at the centre of this thesis. School photographs have been the subject of only passing critical interest to historians, yet they are eagerly collected by local historical societies who use them as key tools in their efforts to imagine the pasts of their communities. This avid collection underscores the fact that these seemingly innocuous artifacts speak volumes about community identities. Despite the wide circulation of his photographs, Adams himself has been almost entirely forgotten. The reciprocal relationships that he had with the communities he visited have not been archived along with the images he made. This thesis begins by piecing together some of the fragmentary traces that Adams left behind on his travels through the province. It then positions his school photography in the particular environment of rural Nova Scotia in 1912. In the context of widespread education reform in the period, this thesis argues that Adams's unique class pictures were at odds with the standardized vision of education that was being imposed on rural communities by government and reform agendas. Adams's particular talents and representational choices, along with his position as an itinerant photographer, working outside the bureaucracy of the school system, made him uniquely suited to create images with local significance

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Spike, Sara
Pagination:vii, 151 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:History
Date:2009
Thesis Supervisor(s):Vipond, Mary
ID Code:976618
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:29
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:42
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