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The Way We Live Now

William A. Ewing (Author), Holly Roussell (Author)

Logo markA Thames & Hudson book


In Civilization, a top curator offers an unprecedented look at contemporary photographs that track the visual threads of humankind’s frenetic, collective life across the globe.

Every day and every hour, human civilization expands, evolves, and mutates. These universal movements are chronicled by prestigious curator William A. Ewing in this stunning photographic exploration, Civilization. Ewing illuminates how contemporary photography, notably art photography, is fascinated by, and attempts to decode, the way we live today. This landmark publication is accompanied by an internationally touring exhibition produced by the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography—a global cultural event for a global subject.

Eight thematic chapters are led by breathtaking imagery accompanied by essays, commentaries, and captions that illuminate the theme.The chapters, including "Hive", "Flow", "Rupture" and "Escape", explore the many faces of our shared civilization. From how we move goods and peoples to the complex relations of close-knit living, Civilization looks beyond the surface to the workings of the world, at the ways we live, work and play and at what happens when it all breaks down.

Visually epic and ambitiously popular in approach, Civilization will reach beyond the boundaries of the photography world to engage and connect with audiences worldwide.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • November 2018
  • ISBN 978-0-500-02170-5
  • 9.9 × 11.9 in / 352 pages
  • Sales Territory: USA and Dependencies, Philippines and Canada.

Endorsements & Reviews

“A captivating visual chronicle of contemporary life across the globe that features images by today’s top photographers… Civilization presents a mosaic of moods, textures and techniques… Capturing the multiplicity of lived experience in an era of accelerated change, this provocative collection is a classic of its kind.” — BookPage

““Bracing, intelligent, and important.”” — Photograph Magazine

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