Books: Double Exposures

PICTURE PALACE

by Paul Theroux

Houghton Mifflin; 359 pages; $9.95

After Susan Sontag's intricate cerebrations on photography, Maude Pratt's observations seem like flash cubes going off at Disney World. "Photography lied and mistook light for fact." "Ubiquity —that's what photography's all about. Locomotion. Not thought—action." And, "I began to doubt that photography was an art. It was a way of life, the best vocation for a single gal to get out and meet people, find a husband, make a few bucks. 'I want to be a photographer' was a plea for love."

Maude Coffin...

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