Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Perils Of Pregnancy

It's a source of joy, fear, pain, love and much more, but for many women, the primal business of childbirth also comes at a very high price. While universally recognized as a milestone of womanhood, pregnancy and childbirth remain among the leading causes of death of women worldwide; every day, one woman per minute dies while giving birth or soon after. An additional 10 million to 15 million women suffer complications resulting from the act of giving life.
Watch the Story of Momma, one woman's tale of dying to give birth, here and read more of the story here.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Think About It

"I think we as Americans can get worked up about a group of people that often we know little about" says the producer of this video. He continues, "This is my try and help people think about the issue of sterotyping Muslims."

Monday, June 28, 2010

Childbirth In Tanzania

African women have the world's highest death rates during pregnancy and birth.  Tanzania, poor but politically stable, suffers from every problem that leads to these maternal deaths.  But the country is also a case study in the ways that African nations are trying to improve the bleak statistics.  
Watch the slide show with images by Beatrice de Gea for the New York Times here.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Faces Of The Favelas

The French artist JR first made his mark in Rio de Janeiro last year, as giant posters of staring eyes started appearing on buildings in the city's oldest favela. He was drawn there following the controversial deaths of three young men, amid alleged collusion between Brazilian soldiers and a drugs gang. But now JR's work has made it on to some of Rio's grander structures.
Take a tour of the city with photographs by Helen Clegg and meet the people who inspired him.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Islamist Vesus Islamist

Moderate Sufi scholars recently did what so many others have chosen to do in anarchic Somalia...they picked up guns and entered the killing business, in this case to fight back against the Shabab, one of the most fearsome extremist Muslim groups in Africa.  
See the rest of Michael Kambar's images here.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Finnish And Jewish

Dina Kantor grew up in Minneapolis to a Jewish father and a Finnish mother who had converted. Her Jewish and Finnish worlds were quite separate but, in 2006, she went to Finland to explore the Finnish Jewish communities of Helsinki and Turku. Originally treating it as part of her MFA program at the School of the Visual Arts in New York, Kantor became engrossed in the subject. No longer a snapshot of this tiny community (only 1,500 people from the Finnish population of 5 million), her ongoing project provides the audience with a portrait over time.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Blood Bath In Madagascar

View the images by Water Astrada for Getty Images Reportage here.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

South Sudan At A Crossroad

View the audio slide show narrated by Jeffrey Gettleman here.  Photographs by Jehad Nga.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Power Of One

Malalai Joya, not yet 30, is causing seismic waves in Afghanistan.  The country's youngest member of Parliment, she is lionised by those who love her and demonised by those who fear her.  She has come to epitomize hope for thousands of women worldwide.  Watch the Power of One by Tom Stoddart here.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Haiti By Jonathan Torgovnik

View a moving series of images by Getty Images Reportage photographer Jonathan Torgovnik here.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Close To Home

Roxanne Pickering, a mother of four, lives with her husband and six year-old daughter in a small Brooklyn apartment. Crippled in a motorcycle accident 13 years earlier, Pickering found new reason to live with the birth of her youngest child. She is a doting and vigilant mother.
Betty Lester is a 40-year resident of the neighborhood, living in the nearby Gowanus apartment blocks. She is a neighborhood activist and, for years, has tried to bring attention to the Gowanus Canal, for which the neighborhood is named. The Gowanus Canal is bounded by several communities including Park Slope, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens and Red Hook. The canal empties into New York Harbor. Completed in 1869, the Gowanus Canal was once a major transportation route for the then separate cities of Brooklyn and New York City. Manufactured gas plants, mills, tanneries, and chemical plants are among the many facilities that operated along the canal.
As a result of years of discharges, storm water runoff, sewer outflows and industrial pollutants, the Gowanus Canal has become one of the nation's most extensively contaminated water bodies. Contaminants include PCBs, coal tar wastes, heavy metals and volatile organics. The contamination poses a threat to the nearby residents who use the canal for fishing and recreation.
Photography and video by Mary Beth Meehan and Michele Asselin.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Female Circumcision

In Bandung, Indonesia, the families of 248 girls were given money to have their daughter's circumcised in a mass circumcision celebration timed to honour the Prophet Mohammed's birthday. While religion was the main reason for circumcisions, it is believed by some locals that a girl who is not circumcised would have unclean genitals after she urinates which could lead to cervical cancer. It is also believed if one prays with unclean genitals their prayer won't be heard. The practitioners used scissors to cut the hood and tip of the clitoris. The World Health Organization has deemed the ritual unnecessary and condemns such practices.
Watch the rest of the story by Stephanie Sinclair here.

Friday, June 18, 2010


It is real and it is striking. In some places it stands 18 feet tall and looks like the gates of Mordor. In other places, it is barely 10 feet tall and looks like it was put together with a stapler. It runs from the Colorado River directly into the Pacific. It is big, intense and intimidating. And it is unfinished. Gaping holes are everywhere. Physically it’s confusing. Politically it’s puzzling. Ideologically it’s complicated. But for Dick and Ron, who both live within a few miles of the border, defending it is simply a matter of protecting themselves and preserving their own beliefs. Drug smugglers don't come to the United States to make an honest living. As the recent killing of Border Patrol Agent Robert Rosas shows, the border is more than a moral line in the sand. The fence is real. We recommend a visit. 

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Liberia Tortoise Community

VII Network photographer, Stefano De Luigi, recently spent time documenting the rebuilding of war survivors' lives in Tortoise community, Monrovia, Liberia.  Read the story and view the images here

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Giving Kolkata's Homeless Kids A Chance

The Hope Foundation reaches out to the city's 250,000 street childrenPhotographs by Maciej Dakowicz / NEED Magazine.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Chucking Out

A portrait of late night British drinking culture.

Monday, June 14, 2010


Living with a disease that was incurable until the 1980's, Bop has lived most of his life at the Van Mon Leprosy Village in Thai Binh, Vietnam. His life has been filled with little joy. He survived through shortages in food, money and the Vietnam/American War. Yet, even with all the disparity in his life, he still finds the strength to keep living, praying and looking forward to something more.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

No Man's Land: The Women of Mexico

Immigration is dividing families and changing social structures in rural Mexico. As the men seek work in the United States, they leave behind the women, children and elderly. Women are doing the jobs of men and acting as both mother and father to sons and daughters. Due to riskier and more costly border crossings, the men stay in the North, some never to return home. Immigration is empowering women to step out of their traditional domestic role. Women are now in charge of the families and the finances, and in some cases, acting as sole breadwinners for the households. Machismo is giving way to a more matriarchal structure the women call “pura mujer,” or purely women. 
These are the stories of the women, produced by Dana Romanoff.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Place To Call Home

A Place to Call Home: Families Struggling with Homelessness is an independent project focused on families in need and the issues surrounding homelessness in Louisville, KY.  Click here to view a slideshow of images from the project.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Bitterest Pill

800 women and girls live and work inside the fortress-like brothel in Faridpur, central Bangladesh. Many of them are underage, and most receive no pay because they arechhukri - bonded workers. That girls as young as 12 should be condemned to a life of sex slavery is bad enough, but they also face a new horror, one that could snuff out any chance of a future they might have had.
Read and watch the rest of the story here.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Kimbangist Symphony Orchestra

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, a country utterly destroyed by war, pillage and corruption the mere existence of The Kimbangist Symphony Orchestra seems like a miracle. Founded in 1994 the orchestra consists of about 80 instrumentalists and a chorus of about 60 members. Most have paid for instruments out of their own pockets, others rely on Albert Matubanza who taught himself how to build string instruments using wood from the local market and cable wire to replace broken strings. Scores of Händel’s “Messiah”, Verdi’s “Nabucco” or Mozart’s “Requiem” are often copied by hand. The orchestra is committed to popularizing classical music in their country.
Watch the story by Marcus Bleasdale here.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Sugar Millionaires

Photographs by Sven Crouitzmann.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Big Vinny

Once upon a time, he was a local celebrity. He earned his nickname after doing a tv commercial for a Round Table pizza named The Big Vinny. For over twenty years, he was the face and voice of a successful used car business in small town Alameda. He sold and he sold and he sold and Californians drove away happy. Today, everything has changed. The business is dead. The lots sit empty. Big Vinny is out of work. But he still remembers the good times. 

Monday, June 7, 2010

Stand Strong For Me

When Bucky Hall decided to stop his drug habit and move his family back to the land on which he was raised, he did so with almost no means to support himself, but the motivation to make a better life for his wife and children. Now, with his wife, Christie, and their two sons, Michael and Aaron, he's begun to put back the pieces of his life. Squatting in a small camper above Carbondale, Ohio, with no electricity or water, on the very land on which he was raised, Bucky and Christie try to make life as normal as possible for their boys while worrying about and figuring out how to obtain the land to which they've returned; a land that carries as many memories as it does troubles.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

No-Snitch Culture

Produced by Adam Wisneski, narrated by Michael Overall.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Promised Land: African Traders In China

In Guangzhou, the largest city in south China, thousands of Africans are trying to make a life for themselves as traders in wholesale markets.  Here, they hope to carve out their own piece of the Chinese economical miracle.  Watch the rest of the story here.  Photographs and text by David Hogsholt.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Georgiana DePalma Tedone: The Mozzarella Maker

At 90, Mrs. Tedone still makes the cheese herself, six days a week, for her Williamsburg, Brooklyn, shop.  Listen to the rest of the story here.  Photos by Todd Heisler from the New York Times.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Wreckless Willie, Part 2

Willie Chapman has 10 children in 3 states and he’s 40 years old. Professional boxing matches are still his main source of income and also the only way he can pay child support to see his kids. Because of his age and losing record, Nevada may not license him to fight anymore. Willie also shows signs of dementia, most likely caused from continued brain trauma caused by boxing.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

We Are Fine Enough

We Are Fine Enough is an intimate, powerful and sensitive portrayal of the life of an autistic child and the ways in which he and his family cope with his disability. In 1994, Marc Schlossman began a photojournalism project documenting the life of Charlie, a five-year-old boy with severe autism and profound learning difficulties. He has continued documenting Charlie, now 20, and his family. Cynthia Bartlett, Charlie's mother, saw her one-year-old son develop the most severe level of autism within autistic spectrum disorder. Only now is Charlie starting to seek and enjoy social contact. Yet he remains self-injurious, he has no ability to speak and he is incontinent. He is dependent on his mother and those around him for his basic care.
'We Are Fine Enough' consists entirely of still photographs from Charlie's life with a narration by his mother. The film began as four 3-minute films commissioned by Channel 4 in the UK for their '3-Minute Wonders' slot and was broadcast in September 2005. Marc began the project to increase awareness of lives with autism and to build a greater understanding of autistic spectrum disorders. 'We Are Fine Enough' is the culmination in film of a long-term commitment to providing a unique view into lives with autism.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Boarding House

This multimedia piece, a collaboration between photographer Peter Fryer and David Campbell, documents aspects of the Yemeni community in South Shields, on the River Tyne, in the northeast of England. 
When Ali Said opened his South Shields boarding house for Arab seamen in August 1909, he connected the northeast of England to colonial networks that ran from Europe through Suez to India and beyond. Over time these lodgings in the Holborn district of the town marked a transformation in the character of the region. Although the boarding houses are nearing the end of their life, the Yemeni community continues to be an integral part of South Shields and northeast England. 
Peter Fryer has been photographing the Yemeni community in South Shields for the past ten years. The photographs in this video have been exhibited at the Side Gallery in Newcastle, The Customs House in South Shields, South Shields Museum, and The Hyal Sayeed Foundation in Taiz, Yemen. Future exhibitions are scheduled for galleries in Sana'a and Aden in Yemen. 
For information on David Campbell go to where this project is discussed further.