E. O. Hoppé's London Types

Brian Stokoe

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Photographers have always been fascinated by social extremes, and in the work of E. O. Hoppé one finds a remarkable contrast between portraits drawn from London's high society and those made of London characters and social 'types'. Hoppé's photographs register something of the tensions of a society caught up in the condition of modernity, in rapid and far-reaching processes of demographic and cultural change, and he is a perceptive observer of the ascendancy (or decline) of London trades and professions in the interwar period. Examined in the light of observations by Susan Sontag, however, I argue that Hoppé's portraits of the metropolitan working classes are pervaded by a superficially benign, but ultimately paternalistic, class tourism. Here, I locate Hoppé's photographs within contemporary discourses of class, and situate his work within the broader history of typological representations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-185
JournalThe London Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2011


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