A Personal Journey With the HomelessBook - 2009
With downTown U.S.A., the second in a trilogy of books on crucial social issues published by Humane Exposures Publishing, photojournalist Susan Madden Lankford takes her cameras onto the streets of downtown San Diego. Combining stunning images, a rich personal narrative, and a range of authentic voices from the streets, downTown U.S.A. paints a complex, thought-provoking portrait of a population at risk and sheds new light on the difficult issue of homeless-ness. In the early 1990s, Lankford rented an old San Diego jail for commercial photography. The homeless in the area, curious about the woman and her work, frequently watched from the sidelines. They began to befriend her, trust her intentions, and tell her about their world. The characters emerging from these pages are diverse and intriguing, forcing us to examine our misconceptions of the homeless as individuals to be avoided or ignored. Among them are twenty-something Jed, who sleeps in a cardboard wardrobe and guides Lankford through the city s underbelly; eighty-year-old Mrs. Walton, who lives in the midst of filth on a vacant lot she once owned; and Michael, whose present-day voice throws his former street life into stark re-lief. What shines through Lankford s work is a passion and tenacity that is rare in any form. In-sightful and empathetic, she never passes judgment on her subjects. Instead, she urges her reader to take a closer look at the at causes as well as the consequences of homelessness, to examine a system that offers no viable safety net for the denizens of our streets, and to seek solutions that will create a better future for society as a whole.
Publisher: San Diego, Calif. : Human Exposures Pub., c2009
Branch Call Number: 362.509 Lankford
Characteristics: ix, 203 p. : ill. ; 26 x 31 cm
Alternative Title: DownTown USA