Toronto Metropolitan University
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Changing Images of the Democratic Party: an analysis of the aesthetic and philosophical underpinnings of Life's photo-essay "Happy days in Miami"

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posted on 2021-06-08, 10:29 authored by Rick Slater
The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of New Journalism on the photo-essay "Happy Days in Miami" from the 21 July 1972 issue of Life Magazine. The stylistic elements of New Journalism such as scene-by-scene reconstruction, overt stylization, status details and others, are analyzed for their role in the construction of the visual and political narrative utilized in this photo-essay. Its influence on 1960s art photography as embodied by Larry Clark, Danny Lyon and the New Documents exhibition is also considered. This was analyzed through research of the various topics (New Journalism, the Presidential Convention in 1972, Life and 1960s art photography), critical readings of the photographs and original interviews with Ralph Graves, Life's managing editor in 1972 and contributing editor Richard Meryman.





  • Master of Arts


  • Photographic Preservation and Collections Management

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • Thesis