The Way We Live Now


See our fast-changing world through the lenses of 140 leading contemporary photographers around the globe


ISBN: 9780500297513 Category:

Holly Roussell, William A Ewing


Our fast-changing world seen through the lenses of 140 leading contemporary photographers around the globe.

With close to 500 images, many previously unpublished, this landmark publication takes stock of the material and spiritual cultures that make up ‘civilization’. Ranging from the ordinary to the extraordinary, from our great collective achievements to our ruinous collective failings, Civilization: The Way We Live Now explores the complexity of contemporary civilization through the rich, nuanced language of photography.

Featuring images by some 140 photographers – from Reiner Riedler’s families at leisure parks, Raimond Wouda’s high schools, Wang Qingsong’s Work, Work, Work and Cindy Sherman’s Society Portraits, to Lauren Greenfield’s displays of ostentatious wealth, Edward Burtynsky’s oil fields, Pablo Lopez Luz’s views on a sprawling contemporary megalopolis, Thomas Struth’s images of high technology, Xing Danwen’s electronic wastelands and Taryn Simon’s Contraband, Civilization draws together the threads of humankind’s ever-changing, frenetic, collective life across the globe.

Visually epic, Civilization is presented through eight thematic chapters, each featuring powerful imagery and accompanied by provocative essays, quotes and concise statements by the artists themselves.

Additional information

Weight 2248 g
Dimensions 24.7 x 29.3 cm
Publisher name Thames and Hudson Ltd
Publication date 15 December 2023
Number of pages 352
Format Paperback / softback
Dimensions 24.7 x 29.3 cm
Weight 2248 g


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William A. Ewing has been an author, lecturer, curator of photography and museum director for more than forty years. His many publications on photography include The Body, Landmark and Edward Burtynsky: Essential Elements, all published by Thames & Hudson.