Books: Fortunate Life Margaret Bourke-White

by Vicki Goldberg Harper & Row; 426 pages; $25.95

Unlike most photographers, she was as famous as her pictures. The images she captured are memorable enough on their own: a line of flood victims in Kentucky stretched in front of a billboard braying prosperity; the German bombardment of the Kremlin by night during World War II; Mohandas Gandhi reading newspaper clippings near a spinning wheel, the primitive tool he used to forge a subcontinent's independence. Millions of people saw these photographs and others equally striking in LIFE; the big news to many was that they had been taken by a woman.

Margaret Bourke-White's position behind her camera attracted attention that...

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