I cherish a good image. Here are some that speak to me
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Majiek Gai Chan, a 15-year-old boy, lies on the ground after being cut with the knife that will mark him as a man in Nuer society. This ancient custom was once common throughout Southern Sudan, but has become increasingly rare as youth choose to keep their tribal identity more private and become socially accepted in the modern world. The government has recently banned the this kind of scarification, but it persists in more traditional areas, such as this western portion of Nuer country in Unity State. The boys are cut in birth order, and were all eager to follow the tradition of their culture. The scarification into manhood used to be done when boys were older, but I was told it is now being done to younger boys as they want it done before the practice disappears. One older man in the village told me:”If you make the mark, you are a strong man. You will not be afraid again.” Shortly after the cutting, one proud father sacrificed a cow to celebrate the manhood of his first son, and shared the meat with the village. © George Steinmetz.
This photo known as “Migrant Mother” is one of a series of photographs that Dorothea Lange made of Florence Owens Thompson, a 32 year old mother of seven children, in February or March of 1936 in Nipomo, California. The iconic photo illustrates the desperation of the Great Depression.
Elizabeth Eckford, perhaps the most famous of the “Little Rock Nine,” braces a hostile mob as she walks away from Little Rock’s Central High School on Sept. 4, 1957. Eckford was turned away by Arkansas National Guardsmen, who were instructed by Gov. Orval Faubus not to allow nine black students to enter the school, despite federal court orders. By Will Counts, AP 1957 file photo
Kennedy Whitehead, 5, and sister, Drew, 2, touch one of the statues at Testament, a sculpture dedicated to the Little Rock Nine, including Minnijean Brown, at the Capitol in Little Rock. By Eileen Blass, USA TODAY
This family has lived in the Laini Saba area of Kibera for over 100 years. Laini Saba translates into “firing range” and was an area where Nubian soldiers from the King’s African Rifles trained. Dozens of Nubian families once lived in the area. Now only a handful of Nubian families remain.
“Kibera wasn’t always like this,” said Toma (left). “To be from Kibera meant that you were Nubian. Now, to be from Kibera means that you are from a slum.” December 2008. © Greg Constantine
In one of the most famous photographs from World War II, U.S. Marines raise the flag atop Mount Suribachi on the Pacific island of Iwo, Jima. The battle for the island was bloody and hard fought. This photograph, by photographer, Joe Rosenthal of the Associated Press, was actually a reenactment of the raising of the flag after the battle.
Barack H. Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the United States as his wife Michelle Obama holds the Bible and their daughters Malia Obama and Sasha Obama look on, on the West Front of the Capitol January 20, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Chuck Kennedy-Pool/Getty Images)
Vertie Hodge, 74, weeps during an Inauguration Day party near Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. in Houston on Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2009 after President Barack Obama delivered his speech after taking the oath of office, becoming the first black president in the United States. (AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Mayra Beltran)
Wedding negotiations are followed by dancing at the house of the groom in a Nuer village in South Sudan. © George Steinmetz.
Aerona Egerton’s ‘Fulani Girl’
8 June, 1972. AP photographer Nick Ut’s award-winning photo showing crying children, including 9-year-old, Phan Thi Kim Phuc screaming and running down Route 1 near Trang Bang as her back was burnt in a US napalm attack during the Vietnam War. A South Vietnamese plane accidentally dropped its flaming napalm on South Vietnamese troops and civilians. From left, the children are Phan Thanh Tam, younger brother of Kim Phuc, who lost an eye, Phan Thanh Phouc, youngest brother of Kim Phuc, Kim Phuc, and Kim’s cousins Ho Van Bon, and Ho Thi Ting.
Selma-Montgomery March: Martin Luther King, Jr. and his wife, Coretta, lead a five-day march to the Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery in 1965. (Photo Credit: Bettman/Corbis)
The iconic photograph on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, taken by a THIRTEEN photographer, Joseph Louw, who was on the scene when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Aides to Martin Luther King point to the area from where they heard the shot that killed King. This photo was released by Life magazine, which obtained it from photographer Joseph Louw, a TV producer who was in a motel room two doors from King’s when he heard the shot.(AP Photo) Copyright 1968 Time Inc.
Coretta Scott King at Funeral for Her Husband: Atlanta, Georgia April 9, 1968. Coretta Scott King listens to a sermon at the funeral of her husband Martin Luther King Jr. (Photo Credit: Flip Schulke/Corbis )
1968 July 12 LIFE Magazine. Images of Biafran children starving during the Biafran War/ Nigerian Civil War captured the attention of the international community.
Ethel Sharrief, Elijah Mohammed’s daughter, Chicago. By photographer Gordon Parks © 1963
1984 Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Alvin Ailey “Revelations.” The bowed arms and outstretched legs of this formation repeated in a group of dancers, this is what I call choreography.
The 1994 Pulitzer price-winning photograph taken by South Africa photojournalist Kevin Carter during the Sudan famine of 1994. This photo, dubbed the saddest in the century, stirred an ethical debates as many wondered why Carter focused on taking the photo, rather than helping the child get to the food camp. A young girl struggles to get to a U.N. food camp. Carter, who spent more than 20 minutes waiting for the right shot, left the scene of a vulture waiting for a child to die as soon as he got the picture. Three months later, Carter committed suicide after a bout of depression. Carter’s suicide note stated “…I am haunted by the vivid memories of killings & corpses & anger & pain . . . of starving or wounded children…” No one knows what happened to the malnourished girl in the photo.
“Thread” by Nigerian visual artist Njideka Akunyili. 2012.
African elephants at twilight, Chobe National Park, Botswana. Copyright © Frans Lanting
Lake Volta, Ghana: There are triumphs, too. Meet Kofi, a young boy who was rescued from slavery in a fishing village. I met Khofi at a shelter where Free the Slaves rehabilitate victims of slavery. He was bathing at the well, pouring big buckets of water over his head. Thanks to the efforts of organizations like Free the Slaves, today Kofi has been reunited with his parents, who were provided tools to make a living and to keep their children safe from human traffickers.
Wade in the Water
Jeanine Kahindo, 28, walks through lava rocks in the Majengo neighborhood in Goma, Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday December 20, 2008. Photo by photojournalist Olivier Asselin
Sudan, Heglig, 2012.
A Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) soldier lies dead covered in oil next to a leaking oil facility after heavy fighting between southern Sudanese SPLA troops, after they entered the north Sudan oil town of Heglig mid April. Dominic Nahr
Omayra SÃ¡nchez was one of the 25,000 victims of the Nevado del Ruiz (Colombia) volcano which erupted on November 14, 1985. The 13-year old had been trapped in water and concrete for 3 days. The picture was taken shortly before she died and it caused controversy due to the photographer’s work and the Colombian government’s inaction in the midst of the tragedy, when it was published worldwide after the young girl’s death. Photographer Frank Fournier