Nicaragua: June 1978 - July 1979

Photographs and texts by Susan Meiselas
Conversation with Kristen Lubben

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10 3/4 x 8 1/2 in. 128 pages, 75 four-color images; ca. 15 with AR functionality Hardcover with jacket 978-1-59711-383-0 October 2016

Originally published in 1981, Susan Meiselas’s Nicaragua is a contemporary classic—a seminal contribution to the literature of concerned photojournalism. Nicaragua forms an extraordinary narrative of a nation in turmoil. Starting with a powerful and chilling evocation of the Somoza regime during its decline in the late 1970s, the images trace the evolution of the popular resistance that led to the insurrection, culminating with the triumph of the Sandinista revolution in 1979. The book includes interviews of various participants in the revolution, along with letters, poems, and statistics. Excerpts from these interviews, gathered during Meiselas’s return to Nicaragua in early 1981, accompany the plates in the book.


In 2008, on the thirtieth anniversary of the popular insurrection, and of Meiselas’s first trip to Nicaragua, Aperture published a new edition. Now, as the fortieth anniversary approaches, Aperture is pleased to reissue the book with an augmented reality (AR) function, bringing a selection of images to life via clips from Meiselas’s films Pictures from a Revolution (1991), in which she returns to the scenes she originally photographed, tracking down subjects and interviewing them, and Reframing History (2004), a documentation of her return in 2004 with nineteen mural-sized images of her photographs from 1979, to collaborate with local communities to create sites for collective memory.


A conversation with Kristen Lubben addresses the history of Meiselas’s work in Nicaragua, how it has been circulated, revisited, repatriated, and reconsidered—how and why it endures. Expanding upon this, they discuss the new layered content experience of AR in this edition, which takes the reader beyond still photography into a world of video and sound.


Susan Meiselas (born in Baltimore, 1948) joined Magnum Photos in 1976, where she remains a member, and currently serves as president of the Magnum Foundation. Meiselas’s coverage of hostilities in Central America during the 1970s and 1980s was published widely, and in 1979, the Overseas Press Club awarded her the Robert Capa Gold Medal. Meiselas has been the recipient of numerous awards, including a MacArthur Fellowship (1992), Hasselblad Foundation Photography prize (1994), Cornell Capa Infinity Award (2005), Harvard Arts Medal (2011), and Guggenheim Fellowship (2015). In 2017, Nicaragua will be among the featured titles in Magnum Photobook, A Catalogue Raisonné, and a selection of unpublished images from this body of work will be part of Nicaraguita (2016), a joint volume with the poet Ernesto Cardenal.


Kristen Lubben (conversation) is a curator, writer, editor, and executive director of the Magnum Foundation.

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