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Dorothea Lange

If you’ve learned about the Great Depression, you’ve most likely seen Dorothea Lange’s work. She was a photographer in the 1930s who captured the most iconic photos of that time. This video gives a brief biography of this talented photographer.

This video pairs well with history lessons from that era, but can also be used in inspiring students today. There are comparisons that can be examined about our lives today and what was happening then.

You can also use this video to discuss the role of social media today. It might be a stretch, but you can help engage your students by describing Lange as one of the first “influencers”. Of course, there are major differences, but her photos did impact public perception. They, more importantly, documented history for us.

An interesting assignment you could tie to this video is to have students capture history. You can make the parameters broad by allowing students to capture history via any medium they choose (written word, photo, video, song, etc.) or keep it strictly to photography.

Alternatively, you could have students choose one of Lange’s photos and write an article. She is a photojournalist, and the students are her writers. Have them create the story that would have been printed alongside the photo if it were in a newspaper.

Dorothea Lange is a great person to study all year long. She is a great woman from history and that is why we are highlighting her during Women’s History Month.

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What do you think?

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