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Stefan Lorant

(1901—1997) magazine editor and historian


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(1901–97), Hungarian-American journalist and editor, and a founder of modern photojournalism. Lorant left Hungary in 1919 to escape right-wing repression, one of a talented generation of émigrés that included the Capa brothers, Brassaï, Gabor, Kertész, and the film-maker Alexander Korda. After working in the Viennese film industry he moved to Germany and in 1930 became editor-in-chief of the liberal Münchener illustrierte Presse. Forced to emigrate by the Nazis, he eventually reached London and ran a succession of illustrated journals: Weekly Illustrated (formerly Clarion) in 1934; Lilliput (1937), which he sold to the press magnate Edward Hulton; and, published by Hulton, Picture Post from October 1938. Assisted by Tom Hopkinson, Lorant pushed circulation up to 1,350,000, while pursuing a leftish, anti-fascist, and anti-appeasement line. Though his idiosyncratic editorial style put a strain on colleagues he had a keen design sense and excelled at juxtaposing images—most famously, Neville Chamberlain and a llama—for maximum polemical effect. After the fall of France in 1940 he left for the USA, and subsequently devoted himself to the production of illustrated books.

From The Oxford Companion to the Photograph in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Photography and Photographs.


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