Is it possible to empower with photography? Tiffany Fairey Sept 2009
What do we mean when we talk about ‘empowerment’ in photography?
Out of the Dump / FotoKids, Nancy McGirr Shooting Back, Jim Hubbard Tafos, Peru Born Into Brothels, Zana Briski A few participatory photography initiatives
Photo Activism and Community Photography in the 1970s-80s
Jo Spence Camerawork magazine The Docklands project
Our central concern in Photography is not, “Is It Art?” but “Who Is It For?”… By exploring the application, scope and content of photography we intend to demystify the process. We see this as part of the struggle to learn, to describe and to share experiences and so contribute to the processes by which we grow in capacity and power to control our lives’
Statement of Aims, Camerawork, Feb 1976
PhotoVoice projects: Young Lives, Ethiopia, 2008 (above) ; Hidden Lives, India, 2006
PhotoVoice workshop, Action for Prisoners Families, 2004
Participants outside project building, Beldangi I refugee camp, Nepal, 2007
He is a 97 year old man who lives in the camp. He thinks life is like smoke that a puff of wind can disperse. He is a pessimist. He says in Bhutan he was very rich and that he came to Nepal with only the clothes that he was wearing. Now he is poor. His clothes, plates and pots are given by UNHCR. He complains that he will die without seeing his country again. Myself and others tell him that is not the way to think, that our problems will soon be solved.
“ These children were born in the camps. They play happily with a doll because they do not know about Bhutan – they do not have sad feelings in their hearts because they do not understand the situation in the refugee camps.”
This photo denotes the hidden style of Bhutanese boys. They are people that possess wonderful skills but being refugees they are unable to fulfill their potential. Their names are Chandra, Sham and Damber Singh. They are very close friends and have similar thoughts and feelings which shows unity even though they fall into different castes. Bhutanese refugees try to reflect their skills but due to lack of economy and opportunity their views remain as thoughts and disappear in vain.
I took this photo nearby my hut. I have spent 8 years of my life in a refugee camp and I do not know how many more years I will spend here. In Bhutan now our village has become a forest. We are becoming adults but have only distant dreams of our country.
“ Here my brother is holding a map of our country Bhutan. Bhutan is called Druk Yuk, The Land of the Thunder Dragon. Though we are away from our country an unforgettable picture of Bhutan is printed in every Bhutanese heart. We felt very sad to leave Bhutan behind but our parents had to leave to survive.