From the very first page this book had me hooked.
Photographer Peter Feldstein lived in Oxford, Iowa his whole life when in 1984 he decided to photograph every person in his small town. Peter describes this project as a "...social experiment, a way to give equal, democratic billing to every single resident- rich or poor, young or old, respected or reviled." (Oxford Project p. 16) After a showing of his work in the American Legion Hall he put the negatives away and went back to everyday life.
For twenty years he went back to everyday life. In 2005 Peter decided to rephotograph as many of the original residents as he could find and to invite Stephen Bloom to interview them, to tell their stories.
What emerged was a book called the Oxford Project. A fascinating look into the lives of the residents in a rural Iowa town. The 2005 photos are curiously the same as the 1984 photos with people standing the same general way heads tilted or arms folded. The stories are poignant.
The book made me wonder what stories were behind the people that I see every day. Would I understand them better or treat them differently if I knew? I'm going to let just knowing that there is a story make a difference.