Race, Representation & Photography in 19th-Century Memphis: from Slavery to Jim Crow presents a rich interpretation of African American visual culture. Using Victorian era photographs, engravings, and pictorial illustrations from local and national archives, this unique study examines intersections of race and image within the context of early African American communities. It emphasizes black agency, looking at how African Americans in Memphis manipulated the power of photography in the creation of free identities. Blacks are at the center of a study that brings to light how wide-ranging practices of photography were linked to racialized experiences in the American south following the Civil War. Jenkins' book connects the social history of photography with the fields of visual culture, art history, southern studies, gender, and critical race studies.