Photos and texts: © Joel Katz

  • These photographs were made during seven weeks in 1964 spent in Mississippi during “Freedom Summer” for my Scholars of the House project at Yale, where Walker Evans and Herbert Matter were my advisors. The project was a book of some 180 pages, which included many of these and about 60 additional photographs. In the Negro community, I met many brave and articulate people who were grateful for the presence of Civil Right workers, knowing that life might become difficult for them at the end of the summer; in the white community, I met many intelligent and thoughtful citizens—as well as racists—who knew the complexity of their history and the importance of that summer. I am grateful to all whose images appear here. As of December 2012, the book was accepted for publication by the University of Alabama Press.