When photojournalist and writer Roby Page first started trekking to Daytona Beach, Florida, for Bike Week in 1985, the counterculture gathering was dominated by rogues, ruffians, and rebels. Now the leather-clad biker rumbling down Atlantic Avenue might be a doctor or a lawyer. More than a half-million enthusiasts arrive at Daytona Beach every March, a number swelled by new bikers from the American mainstream. In Bike Week at Daytona Beach: Bad Boys and Fancy Toys, Page sets out on his Harley-Davidson to search for what it really means to be a biker. Part memoir, part narrative history, and part photo essay, the book not only chronicles Bike Week, but also vividly documents the evolution of two American icons-the Harley and the Biker. Braving wintry weather on his way to sunny Florida, Page gives us an understanding of the visceral, even elemental thrills of traveling by motorcycle. He tracks the history of the outlaw biker image from its origins in the wake of World War II and the parallel history of the Harley-Davidson Motor Company, creator of the machine favored by bikers. Arriving in Daytona Beach, the author shares the changing carnival of Bike Week through his prose and through black-and-white photographs. Finally, Page joins long-time bikers Jinks and Wolfpup to get perspective on how Bike Week has changed and on how the dramatic increase in new bikers has transformed their culture forever. Roby Page, Roanoke, Virginia, is a sociologist and photographer whose work has been featured in such periodicals as Visual Sociology and Contexts and in the St. Petersburg Times, the Gainesville Sun, and many other newspapers.
Arts & Photography, Photography, General,