Steven Pinker Presents His Big Gallery of Cape Cod Photography

Har­vard pro­fes­sor of psy­chol­o­gy Steven Pinker gar­nered a sig­nif­i­cant amount of atten­tion in the past year for his mas­sive, 800-page book Bet­ter Angels of Our Nature, which argues the con­tro­ver­sial the­sis that, despite the atroc­i­ties of the 20th and 21st cen­turies, vio­lence has declined world­wide and we live in the most peace­ful era in human his­to­ry. (A much short­er ver­sion of his the­sis is an essay enti­tled A His­to­ry of Vio­lence). You might expect some­one steeped in research on bru­tal inhu­man­i­ty and war to be a lit­tle on edge, but Pinker has a side­line as a pho­tog­ra­ph­er of the tran­quil and serene.

His most recent series of pic­tures builds on a fif­teen-year his­to­ry of pho­tograph­ing scenes of Cape Cod. In a tweet announc­ing the most recent col­lec­tion, Pinker claims his inspi­ra­tion for this series is the pho­tog­ra­ph­er Joel Meyerowitz, whose book Cape Light ren­ders the Mass­a­chu­setts Cape in the soft sub­tle tones of Renoir’s land­scapes. Pinker’s lens takes in a deep­er, rich­er light, and col­or pops from his images in unex­pect­ed ways—more Manet than Mon­et. His pho­tog­ra­phy, I would imag­ine, pro­vides a much-need­ed diver­sion from the heady inten­si­ty of his aca­d­e­m­ic work, and the images are strik­ing and beau­ti­ful. Look through Pinker’s lat­est Cape Cod series here.

For more of Pinker’s pho­tog­ra­phy see the full archive at his web­site.

And vis­it this link for an exten­sive archive of video and audio inter­views and talks from Pinker.

Josh Jones is a doc­tor­al can­di­date in Eng­lish at Ford­ham Uni­ver­si­ty and a co-founder and for­mer man­ag­ing edi­tor of Guer­ni­ca / A Mag­a­zine of Arts and Pol­i­tics.

by | Permalink | Comments (0) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.