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Oakland Rhapsody, The Secret Soul Of An American Downtown, with photographs by Richard Nagler

Oakland Rhapsody unites the talents of Richard Nagler, an award-winning photographer, and Ishmael Reed, a respected American novelist, essayist, and poet. Through photography and prose, they focus on Downtown Oakland and create a compelling visual and literary portrait of a major American city as it nears the turn of the century.

Downtown Oakland is special. Within a walk of just a few blocks, the visitor can experience the architecture and feel of California in 1895, or 1935, or 1995. Many nationalities have come to call the city home and have contributed to its rich and varied cultural life. All the problems and promise of the American inner city are on view.

Through Nagler's images and Reed's words, Oakland, one of the most misunderstood and unappreciated cities in America, emerges as a beautiful and complex subject, a city of charm and challenge, where the history and the future of the state come face-to-face in multicultural harmony.

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